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John Parrott

John Parrott
John Parrott in October 2008
Born (1964-05-11) 11 May 1964
Liverpool, Merseyside, England
Sport country  England
Nickname The Entertainer
The Carrot
Professional 1983–2010
Highest ranking 2 (3 years)
Career winnings GB£3,190,975[1]
Highest break 147 – Matchroom League 1992[1]
Century breaks 221
Tournament wins
Ranking 9
Non-ranking 7
World Champion 1991

John Parrott, MBE (born 11 May 1964) is an English former professional snooker player and television personality, remembered as one of the best players in the early 1990s.

Parrott won the World Snooker Championship in 1991, defeating Jimmy White in the final. Two years earlier he had lost 3–18 to Steve Davis, the heaviest final defeat in modern times. He repeated his win over White to add the UK Championship title later that year, and is one of only five players to win both championships in the same calendar year. He spent three successive seasons at number 2 in the world rankings, and having compiled 221 centuries is one of several players to have compiled more than 200 competitive centuries during his career.


  • Early career 1
  • Professional career 2
  • Television work 3
  • Personal life 4
  • Career finals 5
    • Ranking event finals: 18 (9 titles, 9 runner-ups) 5.1
    • Non-ranking wins:(7) 5.2
    • Team wins 5.3
    • Amateur wins 5.4
  • References 6
  • Further reading 7
  • External links 8

Early career

Until the age of 12 Parrott was a keen bowls player[2] but then discovered snooker and has been a keen player ever since. At the age of 15 his talent was spotted by Phil Miller who would become his long-term manager in 1980. Parrott was successful at an early age. He lost in the final of the English Under-16s Championship in 1980 and won the Pontins Junior Championship in 1981. He was Pontins Open Champion in 1982, Junior Pot Black champion in 1982 and 1983, and turned professional the following year after winning a record 14 tournaments in his last year as an amateur player.[3]

Professional career

Parrott turned professional in 1983 and he made his televised debut as a professional during the 1984 Classic in which he played Alex Higgins in the last 16 of the competition in front of a packed house at Warrington near his home town of Liverpool. He then caused a stir when he won the match 5–2. He then beat Tony Knowles in the next round before losing to Steve Davis in the semi-finals. By then, bookmakers had him tipped to be the World Snooker Champion within five years (it took him seven years). He took his first ranking title in the 1989 European Open, and defended his title in 1990.

Parrott also boasts 14 consecutive seasons in the top 16 of the snooker world rankings, eleven of them in the top 6.[2]

From 1984–2004 Parrott was ever-present at the World Championship, reaching at least the last 16 every year from 1984–1995,[2] but he failed to qualify in 2005.[4] Since his 1991 victory he has never again reached the semi-finals, but lost in the quarter-finals seven times between 1992 and 1999.

Overall, Parrott has won a total of nine world ranking events, which is seventh on the all-time list behind Stephen Hendry, Steve Davis, Ronnie O'Sullivan, John Higgins, Mark Williams and Jimmy White. Also, his 1991 triumphs in the World Championship and UK Championship make him one of only five players to win both of snooker's two most prominent ranking titles in the same year.

Parrott has come through the qualifying event for the World Championship a record 10 times. In 2007 he reached the last 16 of the World Championship for the first time in seven years, after victories over James Leadbetter, David Gray and Steve Davis (10–9, having led 6–1 and 9–6).[5]

A record ten of Parrott's World Championship matches have gone to a final-frame decider – he has won 7 of these. Also, John Parrott is the only player to have recorded a "whitewash" in the World Championship final stages – he beat Eddie Charlton 10–0 in the first round in 1992.

Because of Hendry's dominance, Parrott was the runner-up at the Masters on three occasions within a four-year span, and never won the title.

On 4 August 2009 at the qualifiers for the 2009 Shanghai Masters he lost 0–5 against Michael White.

Following his 6–10 defeat to young Chinese Zhang Anda in the 2010 World Championship Qualifiers, Parrott finished outside the top 64 in the end of season rankings and was not assured a place on the main tour for the 2010/2011 season.[6] Later Parrott announced he was to retire from the professional game. He told the Daily Mail:

If I'm off the tour, it’s fairly certain that I'll retire. I certainly won't be playing any lower down. [...] If I lose my card, that's me gone. I still have the utmost respect for the game. I've just lost in the World Championship and I'm not going to spit the dummy out. But I don't enjoy the hours of practice any more.[7]

Parrott did however participate in the preliminary qualifying rounds of the 2012 World Snooker Championship, losing 0–5 to Patrick Wallace in Round 1.

Television work

Parrott is a studio expert on snooker for BBC Sport, often partnered with Steve Davis, and also does much of their tutorial and playing guidance. He was one of the team captains on A Question of Sport, alongside footballer and pundit Ally McCoist from 1996 to 2002.

He is also a strong follower of horse racing and is part of the presenting team for the BBC's horse racing coverage.[8]

Personal life

Parrott is a supporter of Everton.[9]

In 1996 Parrott was honoured with an MBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours List.

In 2008 Parrott launched John Parrott Cue Sports, an online retailer selling snooker and pool cues and some snooker collectibles.[10]

In 2011 it was announced that Parrott was to be the Honorary Patron of the British Crown Green Bowling Association (BCGBA).[11]

In 2013 it was confirmed that Parrot increased an already substantial shareholding in Spanish Clothing chain Zara Clothing to 4.8%

Career finals

Ranking event finals: 18 (9 titles, 9 runner-ups)

World Championship (1–1)
UK Championship (1–1)
Other (7–7)
Outcome No. Year Championship Opponent in the final Score
Runner-up 1. 1988 Classic Steve Davis 11–13
Winner 1. 1989 European Open Terry Griffiths 9–8
Runner-up 2. 1989 World Snooker Championship Steve Davis 3–18
Winner 2. 1990 European Open (2) Stephen Hendry 10–6
Winner 3. 1991 World Snooker Championship Jimmy White 18–11
Winner 4. 1991 Dubai Classic Tony Knowles 9–3
Winner 5. 1991 UK Championship Jimmy White 16–13
Runner-up 3. 1992 Strachan Open James Wattana 5–9
Winner 6. 1992 Dubai Classic (2) Stephen Hendry 9–8
Runner-up 4. 1992 UK Championship Jimmy White 9–16
Winner 7. 1994 International Open James Wattana 9–5
Runner-up 5. 1994 European Open Stephen Hendry 3–9
Winner 8. 1995 Thailand Classic (3) Nigel Bond 9–6
Runner-up 6. 1996 Welsh Open Mark Williams 3–9
Winner 9. 1996 European Open (3) Peter Ebdon 9–7
Runner-up 7. 1997 European Open (2) John Higgins 5–9
Runner-up 8. 1997 German Open John Higgins 4–9
Runner-up 9. 1998 Thailand Masters Stephen Hendry 6–9

Non-ranking wins:(7)

  • Pontins Professional -1988
  • Kent Cup - 1988
  • Norwich Union Grand Prix - 1990
  • Humo Masters - 1990
  • Kent Classic - 1992
  • Malta Grand Prix -1994
  • German Masters -1998

Team wins

Amateur wins


  1. ^ a b John Parrott Eurosport UK & Ireland Accessed 21 February 2010
  2. ^ a b c "Player Profile: John Parrott". Global Snooker. Archived from the original on 23 December 2002. 
  3. ^ John Parrott MBE
  4. ^ John Parrott Sporting Life
  5. ^ Parrott edges out colleague Davis BBC Sport, 22 April 2007
  6. ^ Everton, Clive (4 March 2010). "Jimmy White out of snooker world championship after Ken Doherty defeat". The Guardian. Retrieved 19 February 2011. 
  7. ^ "Parrott could call it a day". Sky Sports. 4 March 2010. Retrieved 27 July 2010. 
  8. ^ 2010 Grand National in HD – a first for UK horse racing BBC Press Office, 29 March 2010
  9. ^ "Why I love... Everton".  
  10. ^ John Parrott Cue Sports
  11. ^ [2]

Further reading

  • Parrott, John (1991). Right on Cue : an Autobiography. London: Robson Books Ltd.  

External links

  • John Parrott at the Internet Movie Database
  • John Parrott at Snooker Results and Statistic Database
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