New dad Silverwood has added incentive to hit big time in 2015

Snooker player James Silverwood.
Snooker player James Silverwood.

A city snooker player knows now is the time he has to make it on the professional tour.

New dad James Silverwood is unbeaten in 2015 and now with a family to support is fully aware success is paramount after a few years on the fringes of the world’s elite.

The 23-year-old, who along with partner Sarah Robinson welcomed little Rae Elizabeth into the world last month, said: “I’ve always wanted it but this year I’ve more of an incentive to do well.
“I need to do well.

“The only thing I want to do is play snooker but now I’ve got a family I’ve got to support them.”

Silverwood has already won the North Lancashire area title this year and qualified for the English Open but now has eyes on a bigger prize.

After the North West Championships in Bolton later this month and the English Open in April comes Q School in Burton in May, where the Lancaster lad bids to secure an increasingly lucrative place in the world’s top 96.

Silverwood said: “If I qualify there I’ll be eligible for all TV appearances, the World Championships and every tournament below that.

“It means I’m guaranteed money, which is going up all the time in snooker.

“There has been a bit of criticism of some tournaments with 10 tables going on at once in bigger arenas.

“It’s more money at the end of the day.”

Despite good form, progress in Burton is far from clear cut.

Silverwood said: “It’s over two weeks and if you don’t hit form or you don’t play well, you’re waiting for another year.

“There’s eight places up for grabs and you’re probably looking at 90 players.

“It’s cut throat.”

Silverwood, who works at Slyne Lodge, does however feel a new practice schedule is paying dividends.

He said: “I’ve seen people on TV who I’ve beaten numerous times.

“It’s frustrating because I’ve probably not been the most consistent.

“I used to get beaten by people who I shouldn’t get beaten by but I’ve changed my practice.

“I practice less on my own and I’m up to Kendal two or three times a week.

“I do different things and make sure it’s more quality practice, playing against people, and it’s worked so far.

“I’ve qualified for the English Open before and won the North Lancs before but never in the same season. I feel good in my game.”