allen faces rap after outburst over hearn

Mark Allen could be charged with bringing the game into disrepute after he used “inappropriate language” during a post-match tirade against World Snooker chairman Barry Hearn.

Northern Irishman Allen was heavily critical of the decision to shorten the early rounds of the UK Championship, where he was a first-round victor over Adrian Gunnell on Monday.

A statement from World Snooker yesterday read: “Following Mark Allen’s use of inappropriate language in his press conference at the UK Championship, he has been referred to the World Professional Snooker and Billiards Association (WPBSA)’s disciplinary committee as he is in breach of tournament rules and could be charged with bringing the game into disrepute.”

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Allen had said: “The players don’t really matter, so **** the players.

“Whenever Barry came in, one of the first things he said was that the World Championships, UK and Masters wouldn’t be touched. Only 18 months later, the UK format has changed.

“I don’t think he’s pleasing too many players, but anyone who voted for him has only got themselves to blame. I wasn’t one of them.”

Allen claimed Hearn was trying to create a similar atmosphere to that which exists in darts. “It’s not all about bringing people in to watch and have a good time, shouting and having a drink.

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“He (Hearn) needs to get away from the darts factor. It’s getting close to that. I think in the long run he’ll probably do good for snooker, but not for my generation. It’s time to let someone else have a go.”

WBPSA chairman Jason Ferguson defended the new-look structure of the tournament.

He said: “We consult with players and try to be available at venues and, up until yesterday, Mark Allen had not expressed anything about the changes.

“I can see his argument but the format hasn’t changed. We’re playing snooker, the game hasn’t changed. Barry promised not to change the fundamental principles of what snooker is.

“Our events must look different, they can’t look the same. We have different events, but this event is still traditional.”