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Q School – The 16 Graduates

Here’s a summary of the 16 players who made it through Q School 2019…

David Lilley
Age: 43
From: Tyne & Wear
A familiar face from the amateur circuit who reached the quarter-finals of the 2016 Indian Open as a ‘top-up’, Lilley has now turned pro for the first time.

Soheil Vahedi
Age: 30
From: Iran
Former World Amateur Champion Vahedi turned pro in 2017 and had two years on tour. He was relegated last season but has bounced straight back.

Xu Si
Age: 21
From: China
One of four Chinese players to make it through the minefield in Wigan, Xu turned pro in 2017 and reached the semi-finals of the Indian Open during his first spell on tour.

Jamie O’Neill
Age: 32
From: Essex
O’Neill has worked as a tiler in recent years but will now be looking to piece together a successful snooker career. He reached the last 16 of the China Open during one of several previous spells as a pro.

Chen Zifan
Age: 23
From: China
Chen turned pro in 2017 and reached the last 32 of two ranking events in his first season. He now has two more years to try to climb the rankings.

Fraser Patrick
Age: 33
From: Glasgow
Scotland’s Patrick, who last played on tour in 2017, summed up the pressure of Q School when he said: “You are down on shots and shaking like a leaf. This is all or nothing.”

Louis Heathcote
Age: 21
From: Leicester
A former Junior European Champion at eight ball pool, Heathcote will now have the chance to show his skills on the snooker tour for the first time. He is one of five players who came through Q School to earn a tour debut.

Riley Parsons
Age: 19
From: Cannock
“Words can’t describe how I am feeling. I’m just absolutely buzzing,” said Parsons after making it through event two to earn a first crack at the pro tour.

Alexander Ursenbacher
Age: 23
From: Switzerland
Given that he reached the semi-finals of the English Open in 2017 and scored an impressive win over Ronnie O’Sullivan last season, it is surprising that Ursenbacher ended up being relegated. He will now try to find the consistency required to make it in the sport.

Andy Hicks
Age: 45
From: Devon
Back in the mid 1990s, Hicks was rated one of snooker’s brightest young prospects, having reached the semi-finals of all three Triple Crown events. After a six year gap he is back on the main circuit.

Alex Borg
Age: 50
From: Malta
Borg will be celebrating his 50th birthday in some style today after regaining a tour place. He is Malta’s best ever player after Tony Drago.

Barry Pinches 
Age: 48
From: Norwich
One of five players aged over 40 to make it through Q School, Pinches edged out Long Zehuang 4-3 to earn the last card up for grabs in event three. His best career moment was winning a Players Tour Championship event in 2010, beating Ronnie O’Sullivan in the final.

Peter Lines
Age: 49
From: Leeds
Lines lost 4-3 in the final round of events two and three, but overall won enough frames to qualify via the Order of Merit. He is yet to play his son Oliver in a pro match – could it happen in the coming season?

Si Jiahui
Age: 16
From: China
Talented young potter Si won 12 matches at Q School, finishing top of the Order of Merit. He joins the army of promising teenage players from China.

Billy Castle
Age: 26
From: Southampton
Castle came through Q School in 2017 and reached the last 16 of two ranking events during his first spell.

Peifan Lei
Age: 16
From: China
Lei only turned 16 last week and will be the youngest player on tour this season. He won nine matches at Q School to earn the fourth and last spot available via the Order of Merit.