I headed up to London on Saturday armed with on a couple of recently acquired paperbacks ( something more like a swordstick would have been more appropriate for wandering the Edgware road on my way to the Vic). I was already at the cutting edge, alongside Jambon, Dave Lu, Ed Rogers and his buddy Dave. We had all made it to the O2 arena to watch "POWERSNOOKER" which is marketed to be snooker's equivalent of 20/20 cricket, with glamorous girls, music, lights, audience participation and a plentiful supply of £4 pints. The standard was a little poorer than I expected, by that I mean standard of dress, Ali Carter wore an absolutely horrific lime green shirt that was an affront to even my colour blind vision.
The "shot clock" meant that players only had 20 seconds to take each stroke, however, they seemed to rush unduly, obviously unfamiliar with this format they seemed to put themselves under pressure to play way faster than they needed to and it must be said that the quality of play did suffer for this. Other facets of the game included the "Powerzone", which was the area behind the baulk line, potting from here would entitle you to double points. One of the 9 reds was also a "Powerball", upon being potted a two minute "Powerplay" would be instigated during which players scored double points. Points were all that counted, each game lasted 30 minutes, points counted, frames didn't.
The atmosphere was pretty good, much to the crowd's amusement referee Michaela Tabb would announce "Powerzone" every time the cueball returned to baulk, it did seem rather funny after a few pints, I think it was the Scottish accent. Audience participation amounted to cries of "Powerzone", mocking Jimmy White's errors, and a rather borderline cry of "You can do it" in a Chinese accent with definite overtones of Cockney to inspire Ding, he also was on the receiving end of a few Ding-Dong type puns. Unfortunately I had to leave early as the last train back to safety of Devon departed at 8pm, alas it was not to be thanks to my inept taxi driver. I sought refuge at the Vic, I was thrilled to learn that my allnighter was to be extended by an extra hour thanks to the changing of the clocks. Once I finally boarded the train at Paddington and rested my weary limbs I was trodden on twice by the "Professor" who had taken the seat opposite me on the table, she failed to apologise either time.
Was good to see Jambon and Dave again, the relaxed atmosphere meant it was possible to chat during the play. We also had dinner at Gaucho which was was rather good, I've only eaten at one once before and that was with James in Amsterdam. Oh, and Ronnie won btw.