Snooker World Cup Malta to play Austria in opening match

Wednesday, June 17, 2015, 13:38

Tony Drago and Alex Borg will be heading for China today to team up for the country at the upcoming 2015 Snooker World Cup in China. The tournament which takes place in the city of Wuxi in the Jiangsu Province starts on Monday and runs until Sunday 21 June. Twenty four (24) two-man teams from 23 countries will be chasing a top prize of $200,000 from a total prize fund of $800,000. Malta are in Group A along with China A, Austria, Singapore, Norway and India. Malta will play Austria in their opening match on Monday.

The home favourites Ding Junhui and Xiao Guodong are top seeds, as China won the last World Cup in 2011 when they beat Northern Ireland in the final in Thailand. Mark Selby and Stuart Bingham, the last two World Champions, make up a strong English team. John Higgins and Stephen Maguire will represent Scotland, while Mark Williams and Michael White are the Welsh team. Australian pair Neil Robertson and Vinnie Calabrese will also be among the favourites. The Irish team is made up of veterans Ken Doherty and Fergal O’Brien.

The 24 teams will be divided into four groups of six teams, with each team to play five matches in the group stages. Five frames will be played in group matches with a point awarded for every frame won. The tricky short format will be a combination of singles and doubles play. The top two teams in each group qualify for the knock-out stages.

Eurosport will be showing daily live coverage at 6.30am and 1.30pm with highlights at 8.00pm (Malta time).

Group A China A (Ding Junhui and Xiao Guodong) Norway (Kurt Maflin and Anita Maflin) Singapore (Marvin Lim Chun Kiat and KK Chan) India (Aditya Mehta and Pankaj Advani) Malta (Tony Drago and Alex Borg) Austria (Andreas Ploner and Paul Schopf)

Group B Hong Kong (Marco Fu and Au Chi Wai) Scotland (John Higgins and Stephen Maguire) Iran (Hossein Vafaei Ayouri and Ehsan Heydari Nezhad) Malaysia (Thor Chuan Leong and Mohd Reza Hassan) Brazil (Igor Figueiredo and Itaro Santos) Belgium (Luca Brecel and Thomas Skalski)

Group C Australia (Neil Robertson and Vinnie Calabrese) Wales (Mark Williams and Michael White) Pakistan (Hamza Akbar and Muhammad Sajjad) Qatar (Ahmed Saif and Ali Alobaidaly) Poland (Mateusz Baranowski and Adam Stefanow) Northern Ireland (Gerard Greene and Joe Swail)

Group D England (Mark Selby and Stuart Bingham) Republic of Ireland (Ken Doherty and Fergal O’Brien) China B (Zhou Yuelong and Yan Bingtao) Thailand (Dechawat Poomjaeng and Thepchaiya Un-Nooh) UAE (Khalid Alkamali and Mohamed Shehab) Germany (Lukas Kleckers and Felix Frede)

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