Championship League, Stage one. Group 2nd.
Match will be played about 2:30 P.M.
It will be a match between 33-year-old Jordan Brown from Northern Ireland and 46-year-old Michael Judge from Ireland. The favorite of the game is Brown, the current, very unexpected, champion of Wales. I think that the opinion of the bookmaker market is right that Brown is more likely to win. However, I think the market over-evaluates his chances of winning.
If we look at the career statistics of both, in many details the better numbers are on Judge's side. Please pay attention to the fact that Brown has only 5 professional seasons behind him, and Judge - 20. In the last 2 years, Brown has built up his ranking quickly, especially in last season.He is currently ranked 40th, the highest in his history, of course. However, Judge was highest ranked 24th in 2003 and was in the top 40 for 10 years of his career. By writing about it, I only want to show his potential, no more!
Brown finished the previous season in early April, very weakly, after losing the last 3 games. Including 2 matches against rivals that the winner of the Welsh Open should beat (Hallworth, Lawler). Judge regained professional status after 10 years. This year's Q-School qualifying was difficult due to the large number of strong players, usually former, often recent pros. This quallies ended in mid-June, only 5 weeks ago. I will not hide that Judge was a bit lucky, because in 9 matches he fought only 3 times against former pros (Johal, Page, Vahedi). The fact is, however, that he only lost to Page, and he simply destroyed the weaker rivals.
Neither Brown nor Judge are breakbuilders. Therefore, they have to balance well between offensive and defensive. It seems to me that both of them can be characterized as mentally resistant and stubborn in their pursuit of victory. Brown's advantages are primarily a more recent experience of playing against the best snooker players and a bit more frequent building of breaks. Judge had a shorter break from official matches before which he showed himself at least solidly.
For all the reasons mentioned above, I believe the chances of Judge not losing this match are greater than the betting market suggests. The selected handicap will allow me to earn money if Judge wins 2 frames.