Peter Ebdon arrived at Alexandra Palace in good time for his debut full live commentary stint with the BBC alongside Dennis Taylor for the Stuart Bingham v Ding Junhui evening first-round match on opening Sunday.
Being a former world champion, Ebdon very much fitted the mould for recent BBC appointments in the role, and Taylor and fellow former Crucible king and broadcaster John Parrott spent time reassuring Ebdon in the salubrious surroundings of the media centre canteen area before he took up his place in the booth.
For Parrott, this consisted mainly of telling Ebdon that Taylor once couldn’t speak in the commentary box with a large boiled sweet in his mouth, which led to the wise-cracking Scouser immediately offering him another one.
But Taylor had his own victory to celebrate, having finally won a battle lasting several years with the bean-counters to install some more comfortable chairs for the late-night finishes.
Ebdon was helpfully told by the press that swearing, shouting ‘Vegan Power’ at full volume and discussing the merits of organic carrots were all de rigeur as a commentator – advice he wisely chose to ignore.