No sooner was the action underway in Sheffield so was Ronnie O’Sullivan’s mouth, which was ironic as he hasn’t been saying much of late. He has been on work to rule as far as the media goes and answering with monosyllabic answers to the media’s questions. He is in a massive sulk after various feckless comments he had been making leading up to the Masters in January earned him a fine or two from Barry Hearn. As always Ronnie was pushing everyone’s patience in the game - deliberately so - with those various disparaging comments about players, venue, refs and fans, like an bored arrogant king sitting on his throne eating a leg of lamb as that’s the way he entertains himself. But of late he hasn’t looked like the guy who can win a tournament at will and genuinely falling down the rankings. Some say that is his real frustration that he is no longer snookers big star. He is in the peloton and he doesn’t like it.
As usual The Crucible had sold out ten months ago as the regulars took their seats, the man wearing the retro Coventry City football shirts a bigger talking point than some of the matches in the first week. But unlike City the game of snooker is in rude health and plenty of favorites in one of the most open championships for a while.
The defending champion traditionally plays first match and Mark Selby battered qualifier Fergal O’Brien 10-2. Fergal made the news the week before in the grueling qualifiers for the event by deliberately playing slowly to get over the line against his opponent David Gilbert, resulting in a World Record deciding frame lasting 2 hours and 4 minutes. The previous record was set in 2015 of 1 Hour 40minutes.
Ronnie had a scrappy win over the rather odd and sinister looking Gary Wilson 10-7 and let lose in the press conference afterwards about suing World Snooker over gagging contracts. Gary Wilson, part time taxi driver, went back to obscurity. Other notable wins saw some peoples outsider Marco Fu (20-1) squeeze through 10-9 against potting star Luca Brecel after stifling the young Belgium players game. Fu does that a lot and it works for him.
The top half of the draw was stacked full of a record six Chinese players at the Crucible and maybe a sneaky attempt by World Snooker to get another one in the final to boost Chinese viewing figures. Just the 200 million watched Ding in last years final against Selby. Zhou Yuelong was the second Chinese casualty in round one after losing to Ding 10-5, whilst 17-year-old - and the sports first millennial - Yan Bingtao lost 10-8 to Shaun Murphy. There are a record 7 Chinese lads in the finals this year.
The huge shock of the round came on the first Wednesday when Wellingboro’s Rory McLeod, the events only Muslim and black player, beat tournament favorite Judd Trump, who appeared to be carrying a niggle. Trumps injured arm seemed not to be affecting him as he raced into a 4-0 interval lead though, playing the devastating shot making snooker no one can live with. But after the break he was clearly troubled and the 1000-1 outsider won 5 in a row. Trump rallied the next day but never lead the Jamaican born player who was 9-7 up when they were pulled off for slow play to allow the next scheduled match to start. They came back at 9pm and shared one frame each, meaning McLeod was through, one of four Northants players (my county)in the finals.
===Round One Results===
Judd Trump (Eng) 8-10 Rory McLeod (Eng)
Ryan Day (Wal) 4-10 Xiao Guodong (Chn)
Allister Carter (Eng) 7-10 Graeme Dott (Sco)
Mark Selby (Eng) 10-2 Fergal O'Brien (Ire)
Anthony McGill (Sco) 2-10 Stephen Maguire (Sco)
Kyren Wilson (Eng) 10-6 David Grace (Eng)
Ronnie O'Sullivan (Eng) 10-7 Gary Wilson (Eng)
Stuart Bingham (Eng) 10-5 Peter Ebdon (Eng)
Shaun Murphy (Eng) 10-8 Yan Bingtao (Chn)
Marco Fu (HK) 10-9 Luca Brecel (Bel)
Mark Allen (NI) 10-8 Jimmy Robertson (Eng)
John Higgins (Sco) 10-6 Martin Gould (Eng)
Ding Junhui (Chn) 10-5 Zhou Yuelong (Chn)
Liang Wenbo (Chn) 10-7 Stuart Carrington (Eng)
Round Two and victory for Ronnie O’Sullivan over Shaun Murphy. There was a bit of edge between the two after comments on Twitter but The Rocket always in charge. There was a moment at 11-7 that summed up the difference between the two as the more studious and erudite Murphy suffered a horrendous kick on a dead straight easy red that didn’t even jaw. O’Sullivan didn’t bother getting the white cleaned and knocked in a ton, his 867th. Game over.
Stephen McGuire effectively got a bye into the ¼ finals as he smashed Rory McLeod 13-3 and John Higgins began to eye his fifth world title with a big 13-8 win over Mark Allen, age not withering this guy. You have to feel for Allen as he had a 95% pot success rate and played the best he could and still got stuffed. Higgins is reborn and claiming back those shame years around his match fixing thing.
Ding Junhui won a final frame decider against Liang Wenbo in his second all Chinese match up. Northants boy Kyren Wilson showed real steel to come through 13-10 against ex World Champion Stuart Bingham and looks a future champion. This kid looks a real player and so very technically correct. Marco Fu, most people’s outsider for the title, saw off an out of form Neil Robertson 13-11, who blamed his average season on his ‘video game addiction’. Selby had no problems seeing off another Chinese player, Xiao Guodong 13-6.
===Round Two results===
Mark Selby (Eng) 13-6 Xiao Guodong (Chn)
Graeme Dott (Sco) 6-13 Barry Hawkins (Eng)
Neil Robertson (Aus) 11-13 Marco Fu (HK)
Stephen Maguire (Sco) 13-3 Rory McLeod (Eng)
John Higgins (Sco) 13-9 Mark Allen (NI)
Ding Junhui (Chn) 13-12 Liang Wenbo (Chn)
Shaun Murphy (Eng) 7-13 Ronnie O'Sullivan (Eng)
Stuart Bingham (Eng) 10-13 Kyren Wilson (Eng)
===1/4 FINALS ===
Boring Barry Hawkins is there again in the last 8, very much a longer frame Sheffield specialist, the 37-year-olds fourth last 8 and his third last 4 in the World Championships this decade. He is certainly not one of the best four players in the world, his style of play very much a percentage one and 100% effort and concentration, knowing his limitations and not giving an inch. He is dull.
Ronnie was again bounced out in the Q/Fs for the third year running, clearly past his best now. Ding, at 30, has finally matured and set to go one better than last years final. He would now play Selby in the semis and some would say the fact Ronnie wants Ding to do well and doesn’t like playing Selby was the real reason The Rocket lost. Ronnie had time to smash in a stunning 7 minute 146 clearance, and again turned down a gettable black for a pink in the center for the maximum. Its 10 grand for highest break of the tournament but just 5 grand for a maximum? In the 1990s they used to take out insurance policies in case a maximum did occur as it was that rare and lucrative.
Selby overpowered Marco Fu 13-3, the Chinese player coming to the end of an excellent season having nothing left. In the final session the Jester from Leister cracked in not one but THREE total clearances of 132,139,143 to secure the session early win. It was sublime stuff and a third world title beckoned. John Higgins dished out a similar hiding to Kyren Wilson, who seemed lost during his 13-7 crushing. I like Kyren and he used to serve beers at our local snooker center back in the day between marathon practice sessions and he looks the real deal. It took Ronnie nine years to win his first title and so plenty of time yet for Ky.
Barry Hawkins (Eng) 13-9 Stephen Maguire (Sco)
Ronnie O'Sullivan (Eng) 10-13 Ding Junhui (Chn)
Mark Selby (Eng) 13-3 Marco Fu (Hk)
Kyren Wilson (Eng) 6-13 John Higgins (Sco)
Selby 17- Ding 15
Higgins 17 Hawkins 7
So its World Champion Mark Selby v 4 times World Champion John Higgins for the Final. Not many would have penned in Higgins to be in the final at the start of the season, a record 19-year gap between his first final. .But the Wizard of Wishaw has had a great season and he his in after overpowering an infective Hawkins, Barry/s third semi final in four years. Selby was taken to the wire after a rematch of last years final with Ding and effectively playing two finals in a row now. Higgins will be the fresher as he needed just one frame in his final session.
Selby had his final the day before after squeezing past Ding and looked physically and mentally tired on Sunday, day one of the two day final. For some reason the semi final is nearly as long as the final and back to back., as tough as playing back-to-back FA Cup Finals in the 1980s. Selby had to recharge during the match and soon 6-2 down after the first session as the more refreshed Higgins who had wrapped his semi up with a session to spare took control. At 10-4 it looked very good for the Scotsman but Selby is famous for his ability to achieve what he sets out to do and finished strongly to close 10-7. A goods nights sleep and it would improve. It was a score both players were happy with.
Day two and Selby continued his form and smashed Higgins in the afternoon session by winning 6-1 to lead 13-11 going into the final tnse evening session. Could Higgins respond from leading 10-4 to trailing 13-11 and stop the rot? They shared the first two frames but Selby won the next two, 3/1 in the mini session, 16.14. Selby claimed to have hit a black when he rolled up short but and a poorly positioned ref seemed to go back on his original call that he thought it was short by saying it hit, at one point asking for a TV replay, sooo not allowed. Pressure gets to everyone in this magnificent arena. Selby won frame 31 with a brilliant hundred, his seventh century of the tournament. But Selby is granite and dug deep to win back-to-back World titles, only O’Sullivan doing the same this century.
Selby has made 4 World Finals in 10 years and won 3. In the same period he was one Three Masters and made five finals and Two UK Championships., losing a third. There are eight other big finals of tournaments which he won seven. He has ended the last 6 years as world number one and done that by targeting the tournaments that produce the most revenue or ranking points. Whisper it quietly but we have a new Steve Davis.
This is a tough one to write a review on as I have had no real issues with BT and I have had a good service from them and had little to no reason to complain to them. I have the basic 10gb broadband and an anytime calls package for £30 pcm. This, however, did not include mobile numbers but I have a mobile to make all of those so it was not a problem. The initial contract was for 18 months and I am now out of contract with them so I am free to change provider.
Why did I Switch to BT in the first place?
Simple, I was with a provider who gave such awful service both phone and broadband wise and customer service wise that I wanted to go to a provider I felt that I could trust. BT have done nothing to break this trust. My phone and broadband service has remained good for all the time I have been with them.
The service I received:
My phone line was always clear and had no occasions where I could not get a dial tone. My broadband was fast enough for my needs and I did not notice any slowdown during peak times. Whether the 10gb limit was enough is debateable as I do go close to the limit on most months so I could have done with perhaps a little more on this. The BT home hub whilst perhaps not the best thing to look at it did perform well wired and wirelessly throughout my flat. Even when I was next door I could pick up a good signal from the home hub. As there was only me using it I can't comment on how well it copes with multiple devices.
I only have a landline to make all those 0800, 0845 and 0870 calls which are always far more expensive on a mobile so the fact I had free calls to even the 0845 and 0870 at any time of day and any day of the week within my package was an advantage. Unfortunately for all new customers this is now an optional extra so will cost more.
On the odd occasion I did have to call BT (broadband outage at the exchange) I got a UK call centre (I must have been lucky there I think) and I was given simple answers to simple questions which was a big improvement on my previous provider. Also I received an email warning when I was close to my broadband limit so I could reduce my usage so I didn't go over the limit.
The fact you have access to BT wifi when out and about may be an advantage to some but I have security concerns about using the internet anywhere but on a secured network so this didn't influence me decision to join BT all that much.
Why am I looking to leave then?
Simple - their prices are too high. Now I know you get what you pay for and in most cases this is true but I feel BT's prices are too excessive for what you get. They also charge you over £4 if you don't pay your bill by direct debit. However, as I did opt for DD payments this was not an issue for me.
Due to increases in line rental the price I am paying for my package is due to go up in January. Yes I know I can pay for a year's line rental in advance to make it cheaper but I prefer to spread the cost of things like this. I also feel that the £5 charge if you go over your broadband limit twice in a calendar year by even a tiny amount is a bit excessive. This is as they charge for each extra 5GB used or part of, so even if you only use a few hundred kb of it you are still charged the £5.
I also feel that the lack of any real reward programme with BT also counts against them as it feels like they don't value customer loyalty.
I did contact BT to advise them that I was thinking of leaving after finding a better deal elsewhere but all they tried to offer me to keep me as a customer was to switch me to their infinity broadband which would be faster (speed has never been an issue) and give me 40gb of usage - all for only £10 more than I was currently paying. As you can imagine this did not appeal to me and after pressing the issue that I could get the same package I already had elsewhere for less than I was currently paying and get 4 times the down load limit the reply I got was that 'BT don't try to compete on price' well that put the tin hat on it. They tried to keep me by pointing out I could have BT sport for free I asked what advantage that was and was told that I could get many live football matches that Sky didn't have. The operator was a bit put out when I told her that I can't stand football so it was no incentive to me.
Well BT have provided me with a good service so I have no complaints in that department but I just wish they would lower their prices as this is the only reason I am looking to leave BT.
I currently have my home phone and broadband with BT, something that is going to have to change soon. As far as the service is concerned I cannot complain regards my broadband. It is quite fast and is very rarely down. However, that is where the good news ends. What I dislike about BT is the way they have to try and drain every £1 out of your pocket. They bought in the charge of £6 if you decided to pay your bill with a cheque or over the counter in a bank or in other words if you didn't have a direct debit arrangement with them. So to get rid of this charge you had to pay by direct debit, something a lot of people are not comfortable with. I have now been informed that they are charging everyone a fee of £1.50 for every bill you receive. What a cheek!! You can opt out of this charge by accepting paperless bills via the internet. That is all very well but there are still a lot of people in this country who don't use computers, especially the old people. There is no other company that charges you a fee just to receive a bill or an invoice. How would the rest of the business world exist if every business charged each other for receiving a bill!!
I think BT are just walking all over their customers by doing this. This is definitely one step too far for me and I am now looking to move my business elsewhere.
A communications company - don't make me laugh! Every single time I try to contact them it's an absolute nightmare. Why does everything have to be so difficult? I am so stressed by the experience. They are appalling. An endless loop of meaningless messages and options and when you do finally get through to a person they can't sort your problem and then tell you to have an "awesome day"! How truly pathetic. What an absolute shower they are. Obviously they have not read their reviews on any site as the reviews are uniformly negative. How do they survive as a company?
BT should be ashamed with themselves. I have not been able to use my BT vision since early January 2013, but I am still paying for it until the 4th March and have never been offered any compensation, I have had 3 engineer appointments, all 3 of which the engineer has either cancelled or not shown up, and I have said that I no longer want the equipment. Before it all got out of hand, I had to renew my broadband and telephone, which I did with BT out of convenience, which I am seriously regretting now. I pay for unlimited anytime calls to find out today that I have been charged for the last two months for 01 calls made through the week, significantly increasing my bills. Also, when I am contacting a company called British Telecoms, I expect to speak to someone within my own country. Be warned if you are considering using BT, they are one of the most expensive on the market, but there customer services is pretty poor.
THE WORST COMPANY IVE EVER DEALT WITH, IM OUT OF POCKET NOT HAPPY AND WILL NEVER BUY ANOTHER PRODUCT FROM BT AGAIN.BT YOU SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF YOURSELVES
The worst company in the world sent 4 different installers to try to install broadband and TV. All failed, none of them brought the right equipment. NEVER EVER GO TO BT!
I went with BT for one reason and one reason only,and that was to do with Cable Thefts in the area!BT customers were always the first customers who got reconnected in a reasonable amount of time,whereas other broadband companies got the bums rush so to speak.
Four time in one year we had no phone and no internet,the longest being 10 days with no outside contact whatsoever,and my old provider then gave me £2.06 compensation for 10 days of non service!
When I signed up for BT Broadband a couple of years ago,I was pretty sure that this was the cheaper option for me as the package included free calls as well as the high speed broadband for a good price.
My Bill was around £17 per month initially but having changed to free 01 calls anytime it obviously went up if I called mobile numbers etc.
My Latest Bill below!
Line Rental £14.60
Broadband and Calls £10.25
Anytime calls add-on £4.90
BT NetProtect Plus £3.49
Please note that the "Free Anytime Calls are not actually "Free".
I then wanted BT Net Protect security at the cost of approximately £3.49 per month which was a good buy I thought at the time.
My bills were coming in thick and fast and every time the prices just got higher and higher,every single month and I scrutinised these bills with a fine toothed comb.My largest bill was £40 - a few coppers but
I couldn't find any discrepencies so they got paid.
I contacted BT to find out about BT Infinity as it has become available in my area,and they advised that this would cost an extra £4 which would make my bill around £37 per month to have this high speed fibre optic option,but as an OAP on one State Pension between two of us,this was out of the question because what I had was acceptable for what I do in the internet,so I decided to stick with what I had for now.
The Broadband was dreadfully slow and sometimes it would take a good 10 minutes to get on line and was really frustrating,as it seemed that since "Infinity" has been available it has sent our old service into "Infinity and beyond!"
I received a phonecall the other evening from BT stating I had Package 2 with them,but they could do a Special Deal offering BT Infinity,and I was intrigued as to what "Deal" they could offer.
I was asked if I was happy with the service to which I responded that since Infinity had become available in the area,I have notice a dramatic speed change and it was absolute rubbish tring to load pages that were once quite speedy.
He stated that that would possibly be because there is now Copper Cable and Fibre Optic which would affect the service somewhat,and that Infinity would improve my browsing experience.
Bearing in mind I had already asked a price prior to this conversation,I asked the price again,and low and behold,the price was now £6 instead of the £4 I was quoted earlier.
Obviously,I refused point blank to upgrade yet again,and can't possibly warrant spending another £6 for a Faster Broadband Experience,that's if it is actually faster.
So as soon as my contract is over I will strive to find yet another phone and Broadband supplier who doesn't try and rip me off by off or get rid of the Internet all together.
BT are the worst company I have ever dealt with! I never write reviews but they were so bad I feel I must tell the world! AVOID BT! Customer services have done nothing with the 3 complains I have lodged. There are loads of hidden fees and contracts are non-negotiable. For what you get it is a rip off. BT vision is basic digital freeviewThey charge to use iplayer / itvplayer! My advice is go with Virgin or Sky even if they cost more. If I could give less than one star I would do!
Do you want an internet connection where you can browse with style and speed?
Do you want a phone line that is interference free?
Well BT is just your answer!
Previously, I was signed up to TALKTALK for my phone and broadband but as I mentioned in my over review about them, they were a terrible company with no care for customers at all!
Since I have switched to BT, I haven't had 1 single nuisance call or issue with the internet! The BT team are always happy to help and sort problems out for you unlike TALKTALK where they didn't want to help at all!
I am extremely pleased with my decision to switch companies. The internet is so much faster and smoother and the phone line has no interference or trouble anymore!
What more can I say about BT? There one of the best companies out for phone and broadband and I would never switch to another company especially not TALKTALK!
....little more than customer entertainment on the helpline, except customers might not find it entertaining after a short while. Superficial service may well be ok, but there is a LOT of BS (untruth) coming from the advisors, who are probably trying hard, but are hopelessly under qualified. You better know what you are talking about when you call them - then at least someone does. They can probably routine configure your hub, and share your screen (yeah), but that's it. Don't expect them to be able to anything that you couldn't do yourself on the hub...on this occasion I am waiting for them to turn off my FON hotspot. The initial promised 4min period elapsed with FON still on. Now 24h is promised......fingers crossed.....see another complaint coming......
I changed my services to BT and asked them to transfer my number from Vonage to my BT landline. I was told that this could be done in 24h of course it was not done! I then faced yet again the daunting automatic phone directing service and time and time again I was told that it would be done ... within 24h! and they did change my phone number to a completely random number!!! it makes no sense! I rang back and was told that they had not record of me having asked for my old number! Then I was told that it was highly technical and might take time! then I was told that it could not be done. I ended up asking for the complaint department and was told that BT does not have a complaint department! so I ended up on the net and of course located a contact email. I thought at long last things were going to move ... How naive of me! I received an email informing me that my number had been put on the Xdirectory list! I have now emailed this department for over three weeks... they take over a week to answer my email and again excuses and vague promises and nothing has been done! I am still paying Vonage for keep my old number open but as this has been lasting since the 17 April I have given up hope and will give up this number. Hopeless is not the word I am looking for... incompetence, lack of care and organisation!
As a student I had a BT landline on quite a cheap deal. One day a gentleman from a call centre in the Indian subcontinent phoned up from BT cold-calling about continuing the cheap deal if I agreed to an 18 month contract. Naively I did so.
Unexpectedly I had to move house before the 18 months was up. I called to transfer the contract but the new house did not have a BT landline. BT were prepared to install one for a relatively large sum of money, but as students we could not pay this so I tried to cancel the contract. BT told me I would have to pay for all the remaining months' charges (most of a year). When I said I could not afford to pay it they instantly put me through to their equivalent of a baliff: a very abrupt, coarse woman lacking empathy or useful solutions.
In the end my housemates and I shared the cost of cancelling the contract. However I felt guilty that my friends had to pay for something they could not benefit from, unless by forking out more cash to install a BT line.
I am disappointed BT have no contingency for flexibility in this situation. They are an immense company; do they need to cold-call, do they need to use such long contracts, and therefore hold people to ransom?
BT have our phone numbers but they should not abuse this knowledge by attempting to sell products no-one asked for.
BT recently gave our number to my next door neighbour by mistake. I called BT and they said they would send an Engineer to fix it. The line was fixed the next day and I thought no more about it until I received a bill this month for a call out fee of £127.99!! An Engineer had been sent to fix the fault but they had already switched the number back internally. I called customer services and had a 40 minute conversation with someone who had no idea what they were talking about and no empathy with the situation. I had to ask twice to speak to a more senior person and all they said is that there was no fault so I will be charged. He also had zero understanding of the problem and was merely repeating parrot fashion from a crib sheet that I had agreed to be charged if no fault was found with the line. He also said that he could not look into the problem to see if the line was given to my neighbour.
This is the most incompetent company I have ever dealt with. I am ashamed that they have the word British in their name as the customer services levels are astronomically poor. Anyone with any empathy could understand that a mistake had been made and remove the charge but it is like getting blood out of a stone. If you have a complaint with BT I strongly advise you to cancel your service and go with any other telecoms company immediately rather than putting yourself through the stress and rigmarole of talking to someone who couldn't care less. You may still get ripped off but it will make you feel better knowing that you won't have to deal with their incompetence any longer.
Why it is a rip off?
I could not agree less on BT apart from having worst customer service has also got a vague and misleading practices on condoning services (if not sharing for profits) of dodgey service providers (numbers starts with 09064 and 0904)that charges huge amount for 1.50 pounds per connection, on companies that alledgedly offer loans but ask you to pay money to them before you get a loan (well i havent gone further to this). Ridiculous records/logs that charges a customers like me, for example in my bill, there is log for calls of .18 seconds charged at 1.50, and another .20 charged at 1.50....probably just answering the phone from dodgey premium line service providers giving me a charge of 3pounds for 38 seconds.
-It may be not BT on its own, but also its conspirator to even let the customers be charged this huge amount of money without even knowing it, thinking that it is just a regular phone call charge.
-Customers who are new and who has not got the information to this, would think that they were charged by BT.
-In this situation, BT could just be comparable to a business establishment that sells unacceptable services.
In conclusion, BT should put a control measure in place to investigate and to ensure that the customers are made aware of the services that they have paid for, in its behalf, making sure that the service is genuine and within reasonable circumstances and were made in good faith. For example, regulating the the premium line service providers to ALWAYS tell the customers that they will be paying 1.50 per connection if they made the call. If not, this is a fraud and unfair business practice.