Rea: Hearn will be snooker’s Sultan of the Emirates

By KEVIN CRAIGENS

SNOOKER heavyweight Barry Hearn will be happy with the certain success of  the born-again Scottish Open.

That’s the verdict of former pro and Scottish snoooker expert John Rea ahead of  the first tournament on Scottish soil since 2012 when the European Tour was welcomed to Ravenscraig.

Rea said; “I think its great that a tournament is coming to this country. A lot of people are going. I have a lot of people from my own club and managed to get all of my sponsors to go as well.

“I think it will be a great success, it looks like it will be a great venue. Andy Murray was involved in a tournament there at the Emirates and that turned out to be a success. So I think Barry Hearn will be very happy with it.”

With the event making its debut the Scottish players will want to do all they can to win a tournament on their home soil. With such great expectations Rea believes there will come a lot of prerssure with it as well.

He said: “They are at home and they will want to do well. Will there be pressure? Very much so.”

Rea is the manager for Scottish player Anthony McGill who he has tipped for a bright future and the experienced Stephen Maguire.

Maguire will be in the shake-up and Rea doesn’t see any reason why McGill too cannot go on to win the tournament.

He said: “The last time there was a Scottish event, young Anthony got to the Final of it.

“All the Scottish boys will be up for it but they will also feel nervous about it.”

All of the Home Nations tournaments, including the Scottish Open, are named after a snooker legend with Alex Higgins in Northern Ireland, England’s Steve Davis and Ray Reardon in Wales.

The Scottish Open Trophy is named after record world title holder Stephen Hendry.

And Rea feels one of the players under his management can go on to win the first Stephen Hendry trophy.

He told UWS Newsroom: “Both Stephen and Anthony are capable to go on and win the tournament. Anthony is a very talented player.

“Stephen is a previous winner of Scottish events. They have the ability to do so. We will see if they can go the whole way.”

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