Fresh from her victory at the recent British Women’s Open, Bai Yulu is full of confidence as she looks ahead to her first appearance in Q School, which starts on Friday this week.
China’s 19-year-old Bai has quickly established herself as a promising talent, reaching the final of the World Women’s Championship in March as well as making the highest break in the history of that event with a 127. She finished runner-up to Baipat Siripaporn, but then went one step further at the British Open this month, beating Reanne Evans in the final to capture her first silverware. Bai has also impressed at mixed-gender amateur events in China, notably making a 142 total clearance during victory over former pro Gao Yang at a CBSA tournament in April.
Bai, who has been based in Sheffield for the past few weeks where she has been practising to sharpen her game, now looks ahead to Q School which runs from May 26 to June 6 in Leicester.
She faces England’s Muhammad Aurangzaib in her opening match on Saturday, with the winner of that tie to face Craig Steadman in the second round on Monday.
Bai said: “I want to get a tour card and play as a professional as soon as possible. I watch a lot of WST matches and I want to compete in the same arena badly. I think I will improve a lot if I get to play some of the professional events.
“I’m not thinking about making it all the way at Q School, I’m not making it a goal anyway, because I know it will be very tough. However I will be competing with confidence, and I won’t put too much pressure to myself.
“I’m very glad to have played in the women’s ranking events. I’ve been practising in Sheffield for a while now. It’s a superb place and I am surrounded by proper players who are all dedicated. It helps me to concentrate.”
In all there will be 208 players at Q School, battling for eight tour cards. There will be two tournaments, with the four semi-finalists in each to receive a spot on the pro circuit for the 2023/24 and 2024/25 seasons.
Article by WST.