Melbourne snooker ace Neil Robertson will be among the headline acts when the world’s best players return to Bendigo for the Australian Snooker Goldfields Open.
Tickets are now on sale for the $445,000 event – an increase of $10,000 from last year – at Bendigo Stadium between July 8-14.
A highlight of the Bendigo sporting calendar, the Goldfields Open attracts the top 16 players in the world, 16 qualifiers and two Australian wildcards.
The 2010 world champion and former world number one, Robertson will be aiming for a better finish than his previous two
The 31-year-old has fallen at the second round in both previous editions, but is in good form and has climbed back to number three in the world.
England’s reigning champion Barry Hawkins, who won his first ranking tournament title with a 9-3 triumph over compatriot Peter Ebdon last year, may have to qualify for the event as he is presently at 17 in the world rankings.
The rankings will be finalised after the World Championship in England in early May.
World number one Judd Trump did not play the event last year and it is unclear whether he will venture to Bendigo this year.
Current world number two Mark Selby, Robertson, number four Shaun Murphy and number five John Higgins are expected to compete.
The Goldfields Open showcases Bendigo on an international stage, Toursim and Major Events minister Louise Asher said.
“The Australian Goldfields Open showcases images of our historic Goldfields region, including Bendigo and Melbourne through a significant global broadcast, including key tourism markets such as the United Kingdom and China,” she said.
Tickets for the event are being sold at the Bendigo Stadium box office during office hours, via the website at bendgostadium.com.au or by phone on 5440 6214.
Ticket prices range from $25 per session in the early rounds to $55 for the final.