British Open (snooker)

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British Open
Tournament information
VenueMorningside Arena
Organisation(s)World Snooker Tour
FormatRanking event
Recent edition2023
Current champion Mark Williams (WAL)

The British Open is a professional snooker tournament, held as a ranking tournament from 1985. It was not held for 17 years, from the 2004/2005 season until the 2021/2022 season, when it returned to the calendar. The event has had various sponsors and venues over the years. It took place around November each year. Prior to the 1999/2000 season, it was held later in the season. As a result, two tournaments were held in 1999, one for the 1998/1999 season and one for the 1999/2000 season. Since 2022, the tournament's trophy is named the Clive Everton Trophy, after the popular commentator.[1]

The reigning champion is Welshman Mark Williams who won his third title in 2023.[2] The record for the most titles is held by Englishman Steve Davis with five, one ahead of Scots Stephen Hendry and John Higgins.


The tournament began in 1980 as the British Gold Cup in the Assembly Rooms, Derby. It was a sixteen-man invitation event and was played on a round robin basis with the group winners advancing to the semi-finals.[3] The next year Yamaha took over sponsorship and the tournament was renamed the Yamaha Organs Trophy. The next year the tournaments name was changed to International Masters. The top eight of the first round robin stage played in two further groups and the winners advanced to the final. For 1984 the field of the tournament was increased to 27 and nine three-man groups were organised. The winners played in three semi-final groups and the winners played in a three-man round robin final.[3]

After WPBSA decided to increase the number of ranking events in 1984/1985 and Yamaha withdrew its sponsorship the event was renamed the British Open. Dulux was the sponsor of the event between 1985 and 1987.[3] In the next six years the event had four different sponsors: MIM Britannia Unit Trusts in 1988, Anglian Windows in 1989, Pearl Assurance between 1990 and 1992, and Wickes Home Improvements in 1993. In 1990 FA Cup style draws were introduced from the last 32 stage of the event.[3]

In 1994 the tournament was moved to the Plymouth Pavilions. Between 1994 and 2004 the event was sponsored in only three years by Castella in 1995 and 1996, and by Stan James in 2001. The event was moved to the first half of the calendar in 1999/2000. The event than moved to the Telewest Arena in Newcastle for 2001, the Telford International Centre for 2002 and the Brighton Centre for 2003 and 2004. The event was dropped from the calendar in 2005/2006.[3]

There have been nine maximum breaks during the history of the tournament. James Wattana made the first in 1992 in the last 16 against Tony Drago. The second and third came at the qualifying stage of the event. David McDonnell compiled it in the fourth round of the 1995 event against Nic Barrow and Jason Prince in the fifth round of the first 1999 event against Ian Brumby. Graeme Dott made the fourth at the same event in the last 64 against David Roe. The fifth was Stephen Hendry's sixth official maximum break, which he compiled in the final of the second 1999 event against Peter Ebdon. The sixth was compiled by John Higgins in 2003 in the last 32 against Michael Judge.[4] The revived 2021 event recorded two maximum breaks. Higgins made one in the first frame of his first-round win over Alexander Ursenbacher, while Ali Carter made his during the second frame of his fourth-round match against Elliot Slessor.[5][6] The most recent maximum break was made in 2022 by Mark Selby in the third round against Jack Lisowski.[7]



Year Winner Runner-up Score Venue City Season
British Gold Cup (non-ranking, 1980)
1980[8]  Alex Higgins (NIR)  Ray Reardon (WAL) 5–1 Assembly Rooms Derby, England 1979/80
Yamaha Organs Trophy (non-ranking, 1981)
1981  Steve Davis (ENG)  David Taylor (ENG) 9–6 Assembly Rooms Derby, England 1980/81
International Masters (non-ranking, 1982–1984)
1982  Steve Davis (ENG)  Terry Griffiths (WAL) 9–7 Assembly Rooms Derby, England 1981/82
1983[8]  Ray Reardon (WAL)  Jimmy White (ENG) 9–6 1982/83
1984[8]  Steve Davis (ENG)  David Martin (ENG) R-R[n 1] 1983/84
British Open (ranking, 1985–2004)[9]
1985[8]  Silvino Francisco (RSA)  Kirk Stevens (CAN) 12–9 Assembly Rooms Derby, England 1984/85
1986[8]  Steve Davis (ENG)  Willie Thorne (ENG) 12–7 1985/86
1987[8]  Jimmy White (ENG)  Neal Foulds (ENG) 13–9 1986/87
1988[8]  Stephen Hendry (SCO)  Mike Hallett (ENG) 13–2 1987/88
1989[8]  Tony Meo (ENG)  Dean Reynolds (ENG) 13–6 1988/89
1990[8]  Bob Chaperon (CAN)  Alex Higgins (NIR) 10–8 1989/90
1991[8]  Stephen Hendry (SCO)  Gary Wilkinson (ENG) 10–9 1990/91
1992[8]  Jimmy White (ENG)  James Wattana (THA) 10–7 1991/92
1993[8]  Steve Davis (ENG)  James Wattana (THA) 10–2 1992/93
1994  Ronnie O'Sullivan (ENG)  James Wattana (THA) 9–4 Plymouth Pavilions Plymouth, England 1993/94
1995  John Higgins (SCO)  Ronnie O'Sullivan (ENG) 9–6 1994/95
1996  Nigel Bond (ENG)  John Higgins (SCO) 9–8 1995/96
1997  Mark Williams (WAL)  Stephen Hendry (SCO) 9–2 1996/97
1998  John Higgins (SCO)  Stephen Hendry (SCO) 9–8 1997/98
1999 (Apr)  Fergal O'Brien (IRL)  Anthony Hamilton (ENG) 9–7 1998/99
1999 (Sep)  Stephen Hendry (SCO)  Peter Ebdon (ENG) 9–5 1999/00
2000  Peter Ebdon (ENG)  Jimmy White (ENG) 9–6 2000/01
2001  John Higgins (SCO)  Graeme Dott (SCO) 9–6 Telewest Arena Newcastle, England 2001/02
2002  Paul Hunter (ENG)  Ian McCulloch (ENG) 9–4 Telford International Arena Telford, England 2002/03
2003  Stephen Hendry (SCO)  Ronnie O'Sullivan (ENG) 9–6 Brighton Centre Brighton, England 2003/04
2004  John Higgins (SCO)  Stephen Maguire (SCO) 9–6 2004/05
British Open (renewed, ranking, 2021–present)
2021  Mark Williams (WAL)  Gary Wilson (ENG) 6–4 Morningside Arena Leicester, England 2021/22
2022  Ryan Day (WAL)  Mark Allen (NIR) 10–7 Marshall Arena Milton Keynes, England 2022/23
2023  Mark Williams (WAL)  Mark Selby (ENG) 10–7 The Centaur Cheltenham, England 2023/24


  1. ^ Final was decided on a three-man round robin basis.


  1. ^ "British Open trophy named after Clive Everton". World Snooker Tour. 21 September 2022. Archived from the original on 21 September 2022. Retrieved 1 October 2023.
  2. ^ "Williams beats Selby to win British Open". BBC Sport. Retrieved 20 October 2023.
  3. ^ a b c d e f Turner, Chris. "British Open Including British Gold Cup, Yamaha Organs Trophy and Yamaha International Masters". Chris Turner's Snooker Archive. Archived from the original on 16 February 2012. Retrieved 12 October 2011.
  4. ^ "Tournament Histories – British Open". Global Snooker Centre. Archived from the original on 24 May 2006. Retrieved 24 August 2023.
  5. ^ "Higgins makes 12th maximum". WST. 16 August 2021. Archived from the original on 16 August 2021. Retrieved 21 June 2022.
  6. ^ "Captain Fires In Leicester Maximum". WST. 20 August 2021. Archived from the original on 20 August 2021. Retrieved 21 June 2022.
  7. ^ "Selby Makes Marvellous Maximum". WST. 29 September 2022. Archived from the original on 29 September 2022. Retrieved 24 August 2023.
  8. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Turner, Chris. "On this Week: British success for the Whirlwind". Eurosport UK. Archived from the original on 7 August 2011. Retrieved 24 May 2011.
  9. ^ "British Open Finals". Retrieved 22 June 2013.