After thirty five plus years of watching on the TV, and over three years living in this great city, on Monday before last I finally went and watched a snooker match at the Crucible. If I could have told my teenage self this, she would have been so excited. As it was, I was more curious; interested to witness the Crucible atmosphere that the commentators rave about. (I've noticed a marked increase in both commentators' comments and TV features on players singing the praises of the venue as its contract to host the tournament nears renewal with a real possibility of its being relocated to China). I've been to the Crucible before, so I knew how small it was, and did wonder how they fitted two snooker tables in. I was still surprised though to see just how little room for manoeuvre the players have, with possibly no more than three feet between the table and the dividing screen. Add two pairs of TV cameras and a referee, and it really is a very intimate setting. The audience were very much as you might expect, closely resembling if not the players, then, in many respects, the balls.
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