Mark Williams launched a scathing attack on ‘pathetic’ World Snooker chiefs after they allegedly denied his son access to his dressing room before his first round victory in Sheffield.
The 44-year-old saw off England’s Martin Gould 10-7 at the Crucible Theatre to begin his bid for a fourth title.
But Williams then claimed 12-year-old son Kian was not allowed to wish him good luck beforehand as he had already used up his allocation of two backstage passes.
“They’ve obviously got some kind of grief with me,” said the Cwm-born potter.
“Whatever it is, you’ll have to ask them. I’ve been having this sort of nonsense over the season, and this morning….I couldn’t believe it.
“The boy tried to get in, and they wouldn’t let him in. I was told I couldn’t have any more than two passes.
“My missus said would it be okay to go in to say good luck, and they said no. It is unbelievable.
“They will say: There’s nothing wrong, great world champion, they’d love to see me win it again. what a load of cr*p.
“They’re strict, but they wouldn’t let a 12-year-old boy in to say good luck. That’s strict or pathetic? Pathetic in my eyes.”
“That’s what he comes up for, that’s what he likes. My missus put it out there. It was the last straw.”
Williams reckons he has not been given the respect a three-time World Champion deserves since his 18-16 win over John Higgins last year.
“If you are world champion you expect some kind of privilege. I’ve been on the outside tables at the events in China.
“In Shanghai, I played in this little hotel room. I wasn’t even in the same building as the main arena. Frightening. But it’s only my opinion.”
World Snooker denied claims they had banned any children from the backstage area.
A spokesman said: “Every player in the event is allocated two backstage passes. And they can make their own decisions who give those to. At no point were his children refused entry.”