New 2023 Interview: Ben Hancorn…
2020 English Amateur Champion Ben Hancorn sustained a nasty leg injury when he was young and ended up giving up Rugby to play snooker and look where he is today.
The 41-year-old was a promising Rugby talent from Bristol Rugby.
He started playing snooker competitively at the age of 16, and his first taste of it was playing in the local handicap tournament at the then Keynsham Snooker Club where he managed to reach the semi-finals on the first attempt.
Hancorn remembers: “I remember playing a local professional Kynden Padden and he was a bit surprised he lost to someone who was unheard of. Even though I was getting a nice start.”
Playing for 25 years on and off, his first coach was another professional Andrew Clark, who showed him the get go from the off and taught him snooker the old-fashioned way.
“He was old-school and taught me a lot about the game. The old-school way I feel is the strength of the game.”
Hancorn believes the amateur game is in a good place but that the structure of the amateur circuit needs a shake up.
He believes that there seems to be fewer and fewer ways to turn pro and feels Qschool is not the way to go with it being such a marathon of two/three weeks and experiencing disappointment, especially after such a long season.”
“He adds: “As regards younger players, I feel it’s just going to get more and more sparse.”
“Massive respect to the younger talent turning pro this year, but it’s just going to get more and more sparse.
On winning the 2020 English Amateur Championship, Hancorn said it was great.
“It was nice to play in the final because I had missed out on finals years before.”
He said he enjoyed playing at a professional venue because it helped a lot to get used to playing in professional conditions. He got on tour 6 months later.
Hancorn, in his youth, was also a promising athlete, and at the age of 14, held the school record for the 100 meters, at 11.59 seconds.
One of his best memories is playing Ronnie O’Sullivan in a Pro Series Event and beating him and reaching top of the group.
But reaching the Gibraltar Open quarter-finals he said is still top as his best for now, losing out to Rob Milkins.
Hancorn loves Chinese food.
Thankyou Ben Hancorn for your time, and good luck in your snooker career!