The 16 Seeds: Jack Lisowski
Continuing our series of Cazoo World Championship previews.
By David Hendon
Seed 12: Jack Lisowski
An audaciously talented prospect, Lisowski nevertheless took some time to make progress after turning professional in 2010. It was seven years until he reached a ranking event semi-final, but in the two and a half years from the 2018 Riga Masters to the 2021 Gibraltar Open, he appeared in six ranking finals, losing three times to Judd Trump, twice to Neil Robertson and once to Mark Selby.
This highly consistent spell saw Lisowski join the elite top 16 despite not winning a title and the big first prize which comes with it.
Lisowski continues to knock on the door as he searches for a maiden professional title. He reached the semi-finals of the UK Championship, where he had a chance on the colours to win the decider against Mark Allen. Mark Williams whitewashed him in the semis of the Masters but Lisowski again had a golden opportunity to edge Tom Ford in their German Masters semi-final, only to sit out Ford’s winning clearance in the deciding frame.
On his sixth appearance last year, Lisowski finally demonstrated his best snooker on the sport’s most celebrated stage. He defeated Neil Robertson 13-12 despite the Australian’s 147 in the last session and took another great, John Higgins, all the way in the quarter-finals, losing 13-12 to be denied a crack at Ronnie O’Sullivan in the one-table set-up.
Previous Crucible appearances: 6
Matches played: 10
Matches won: 4
Crucible centuries: 14
A deep Crucible run could turn Lisowski from a well-liked player into a genuine star. He has more steel in his game now than in his younger years and the odd rash shot may be less significant in a longer match with time to recover. This feels like his best chance yet to make an impact at the World Championship.
Either a first round exit or a run to the semis. You never know with Jack, who remains thrilling and confounding in equal measure, but he’s still one of the most watchable players in the tournament.
Bookmakers’ odds on Lisowski: 28/1