Masters Qualifying Event

The Masters Qualifying Event was a professional snooker tournament, which ran from 1990 to 2009. Each season, the winner of the event was awarded a wild-card to play at the Masters.

Masters Qualifying Event
Tournament information
VenueWorld Snooker Centre
Organisation(s)World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association
FormatNon-ranking event
Final year2009
Final championEngland Rory McLeod



At the 1990 Masters two wild-cards were added to the tournament and the following season a qualifying tournament was established for one of these wild-cards. The tournament was named Benson & Hedges Championship. The event was held in Glasgow and Alan McManus became the inaugural champion.[1]

In the 1992/1993 season it became one of the minor-ranking events along with the three Strachan Challenge events. These events carried one-tenth of the ranking points of other tournaments.[2] but most of the top players did not enter, so it lost ranking status from the next season. The event was then moved to Edinburgh in 1994/1995 for three years, to Malvern in 1997/1998 for four years and to Mansfield in 2001/2002 for two years.[1]

In 2003/2004 the event was renamed to Masters Qualifying Event due to restrictions on tobacco advertising in the United Kingdom. The event was held in Prestatyn; the top 16 players were excluded from the event and other non-participating Main Tour members were replaced by top players from the Challenge Tour Order of Merit. After a season away, the Masters Qualifying Event returned to the calendar in 2005/2006, and was moved to the English Institute of Sport in Sheffield next season for three years. The event was last held in Prestatyn during the 2009/10 season.[1]

There has been five official maximum breaks during the history of the tournament. Karl Burrows made the first against Adrian Rosa in 1999. The second was made in 2000 by David McLellan against Steve Meakin, the third in 2001 by Shaun Murphy against Adrian Rosa and the fourth in 2002 by Tony Drago against Stuart Bingham. The last came at the 2005 event by Bingham against Marcus Campbell.[3][4] There was one further maximum break by Terry Murphy against Robert Thallon but it was not officially ratified due to the match being played on one of the outside non-templated tables.[5]




Year Winner Runner-up Final score Season
Benson & Hedges Championship (Non-ranking)
1990   Alan McManus   James Wattana 9–5 1990/91
1991   Ken Doherty   Darren Morgan 9–3 1991/92
Benson & Hedges Championship (Minor-ranking)
1992   Chris Small   Alan McManus 9–1 1992/93
Benson & Hedges Championship (Non-ranking)
1993   Ronnie O'Sullivan   John Lardner 9–6 1993/94
1994   Mark Williams   Rod Lawler 9–5 1994/95
1995   Matthew Stevens   Paul McPhillips 9–3 1995/96
1996   Brian Morgan   Drew Henry 9–8 1996/97
1997   Andy Hicks   Paul Davies 9–6 1997/98
1998   David Gray   Dave Harold 9–6 1998/99
1999   Ali Carter   Simon Bedford 9–4 1999/00
2000   Shaun Murphy   Stuart Bingham 9–7 2000/01
2001   Ryan Day   Hugh Abernethy 9–5 2001/02
2002   Mark Davis   Mehmet Husnu 9–6 2002/03
Masters Qualifying Event (Non-ranking)
2003   Neil Robertson   Dominic Dale 6–5 2003/04
2005   Stuart Bingham   Ali Carter 6–3 2005/06
2006   Stuart Bingham   Mark Selby 6–2 2006/07
2007   Barry Hawkins   Kurt Maflin 6–4 2007/08
2008   Judd Trump   Mark Joyce 6–1 2008/09
2009   Rory McLeod   Andrew Higginson 6–1 2009/10


  1. ^ a b c d Turner, Chris. "Benson & Hedges Championship, Masters Qualifying Event". Chris Turner's Snooker Archive. Archived from the original on 16 February 2012. Retrieved 20 January 2013.
  2. ^ "Strachan Open, Strachan Challenges". Chris Turner's Snooker Archive. Archived from the original on 16 February 2012. Retrieved 12 March 2013.
  3. ^ Turner, Chris. "Maximum Breaks". Chris Turner's Snooker Archive. Archived from the original on 10 February 2013. Retrieved 2 April 2010.
  4. ^ Kastner, Hugo. "SNOOKER – Spieler, Regeln & Rekorde (July 2012 Update)" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 May 2015. Retrieved 17 November 2012.
  5. ^ "The 147 Club". Global Snooker Centre. Archived from the original on 19 January 2009.