World Snooker Championship final welcomes sell-out crowd – first time at a sporting event in a year


World Snooker Championship final welcomes sell-out crowd – the first time in over a YEAR there has been a full house at a sporting event – as MC introduces raucous ‘Crucible roar’ of the 980 fans as Mark Selby and Shaun Murphy walk out for showdown

  • A full house of 980 will watch the final two sessions of the World Snooker Championship final at the Crucible Theatre in Sheffield
  • It’s the first sold-out sporting event in the United Kingdom in more than a year
  • The capacity crowd cheered and applauded as the players entered the arena
  • They were required to wear masks and take Covid-19 tests before and after
  • Capacity has slowly been ramped up as the 17-day tournament progressed
  • It is one of the Government’s pilot events as part of roadmap out of lockdown 

A British sporting event has been witnessed by a capacity crowd for the first time in over a year.

The third session of the World Snooker Championship final between Mark Selby and Shaun Murphy saw a sell-out crowd at the Crucible Theatre in Sheffield.

Monday’s final two sessions of the 17-day tournament sold out over the weekend with a full house of 980 spectators enjoying a nip and tuck final.

A sold-out crowd of 980 at the Crucible Theatre in Sheffield cheered and applauded as the players walked out for the third session of the World Snooker Championship final on Monday

A sold-out crowd of 980 at the Crucible Theatre in Sheffield cheered and applauded as the players walked out for the third session of the World Snooker Championship final on Monday

The final is the first sporting event in the United Kingdom with a capacity crowd in over a year

The final is the first sporting event in the United Kingdom with a capacity crowd in over a year

The final is the first sporting event in the United Kingdom with a capacity crowd in over a year

Mark Selby and Shaun Murphy are competing for the most prestigious prize in snooker

Mark Selby and Shaun Murphy are competing for the most prestigious prize in snooker

Mark Selby and Shaun Murphy are competing for the most prestigious prize in snooker

There was a euphoric cheer and standing ovation to welcome the two players into the auditorium on Monday afternoon as the country took another step towards normality after the Covid-19 pandemic.

Introducing the action, tournament MC Rob Walker said: ‘This is a moment of significance that transcends the boundaries of snooker.

‘Because for the first time in more than a year, a British sporting event is unfolding before a sell-out crowd. 

‘Today is the climax of the Betfred World Snooker Championship and after an eight-month season of silence and social distancing, we’re about to hear the Crucible roar like never before.’

That provided the cue for the capacity crowd, wearing face masks and required to provide a negative Covid test to gain entry, to rise to their feet and applaud. 

Tournament MC Rob Walker introduces the two players for Monday afternoon's session

Tournament MC Rob Walker introduces the two players for Monday afternoon's session

Tournament MC Rob Walker introduces the two players for Monday afternoon’s session

Walker teed up the crowd, who responded with a standing ovation of applause and cheering

Walker teed up the crowd, who responded with a standing ovation of applause and cheering

Walker teed up the crowd, who responded with a standing ovation of applause and cheering

It was an emotional reaction from the crowd after a year of Covid-19 lockdown measures

It was an emotional reaction from the crowd after a year of Covid-19 lockdown measures

It was an emotional reaction from the crowd after a year of Covid-19 lockdown measures 

All of the 980 spectators are required to wear face masks and return a negative Covid test

All of the 980 spectators are required to wear face masks and return a negative Covid test

All of the 980 spectators are required to wear face masks and return a negative Covid test

Nominated as one of the Government’s designated test events on the roadmap out of lockdown restrictions, the World Championship has seen the crowds in attendance slowly ramped up over the last 17 days.

On Sunday, around 600 spectators were in attendance to watch the first two sessions of the best-of-35 frame final.

The event started just over a fortnight ago when the Crucible was around one-third full for the first round matches, with careful social distancing in operation in the crowd.

The quarter-finals and semi-finals operated at about 75 per cent capacity.

Shaun Murphy (left) and Mark Selby (right) are competing to be crowned world champion

Shaun Murphy (left) and Mark Selby (right) are competing to be crowned world champion

Shaun Murphy (left) and Mark Selby (right) are competing to be crowned world champion

Spectators have been asked to undertake pre- and post-event PCR tests for research purposes. 

Other sporting events participating in the Government’s Events Research Programme included the FA Cup semi-final at Wembley between Leicester City and Southampton last month plus the EFL Cup final between Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur.

There will also be crowds at the final two rounds of the Premier League football season and the FA Cup final on May 15.

The Government hopes to remove all limits on social contact on June 21. 



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