MC Rob Walker cut it very fine to take up his usual arena position ahead of the showpiece Masters semi-final between Neil Robertson and Ronnie O’Sullivan.

Making the short trip from home down the A40 and round the North Circular to Alexandra Palace Walker saw his cherished second-hand BMW start to cough, splutter and finally start to emit clouds of steam from the bonnet while stuck in gridlock coming up the last hill to park at the venue.

Pushed for time, he had to call the RAC, dash into the building and enlist the help of World Snooker’s digital media officer Lewis Ward to go out and deal with the recovery organisation while he attended to a sell-out crowd that in all truth did not need too much warming up for such a clash.

The man from the RAC claimed to have fixed the problem – a faulty pipe – but more issues the next day left Walker ruefully contemplating having to shell out for a replacement vehicle.