Defending champion Judd Trump has branded Anthony Hamilton "selfish" for withdrawing from the World Snooker Championship on the eve of the tournament.
Eighth-seed Hamilton suffers from chronic asthma and announced today that he was skipping the Worlds after a “personal risk assessment”, following the decision to allow a limited crowd to attend the event at the Crucible.
Trump feels Hamilton should have made the decision before entering the qualifiers, where he beat Scott Donaldson and Sam Craigie.
“I find it very hard on the other people that he has taken the opportunity from – I think this was announced with enough time to know there was going to be a crowd at this tournament," the reigning champion said.
“There is a lot of money to be played for in this tournament. A lot of low ranked players struggle to put food on the table and especially with things going on, you’ve got to try to earn a living.
“People need to think of the bigger picture sometimes and try not to be selfish and give others the opportunity to provide as well.”
Hamilton apologised to the players who he knocked out in qualifying when he made a statement through World Snooker this evening:
“It has been a really difficult decision for me. I was extremely impressed by the way that WST and their partners ran the qualifying rounds, they made the players feel totally safe.
“However due to my health condition, after careful consideration I have decided not to play in the final stages.”