Plenty of Yorkshire-based footballers have dropped in to the Crucible over the years, taking advantage of the proximity of the World Championship in Sheffield for a game used by so many to relax away from their own pressures.
This correspondent can certainly remember the likes of Mel Sterland and David Hirst, former Sheffield Wednesday greats, turning up to watch the action.
On Thursday night it was striker Billy Sharp at the venue, a genuine fan of the game who has been many times and had turned up to see defending champion Ronnie O’Sullivan in the first session of his last-16 match against Joe Perry.
Sharp, out of favour at Premier League Southampton, is currently on loan at nearby Doncaster Rovers, battling to save their Championship status and with a huge match on Saturday against play-offs chasing Reading.
He said: “I love the snooker and probably like most people my favourite player is Ronnie O’Sullivan. I have been for I think the last five or six years now. We have a pool table at the training ground but I do have a nine-foot table at the house so I play quite a bit.”