STUART BINGHAM faces another ‘Battle of Essex’ at the Paul Hunter Classic – and this time he is determined to claim the bragging rights.
Ball Run was knocked out by Ali Carter in the last ranking event as the Chelmsford-based pro went on to record a memorable title win at the World Open in China.
Carter will be at the Stadthalle in Germany to defend his Paul Hunter Classic crown too, but it is Southend’s Sydney Wilson, 26, who will be Bingham’s first opponent early on Saturday afternoon (August 27).
Wilson is world ranked 87 and learnt his trade under the late Vic Harris, who also helped world No 2 Bingham with his game at the start of his career.
Bingham said: “I know Sydney a little bit and I think he practises at Ali Carter’s club in Witham now.
“He has had some good results and there will be a bit of local rivalry there again, but I feel it is one I should win if I play my A-Game.
“The Paul Hunter Classic is an event I like because you always get a good rapport with the crowd.
“It just seems to be a bit more relaxed there than at some other tournaments.
“And I would love to get my hands on that trophy – and next week preferably!”
Bingham will also be giving a slightly modified cue an outing in Germany after having it altered at Parris Cues in London.
He said: “I’ve had a little bit taken off the top and a bit of length added at the bottom.
“It’s the way I had it a few years ago and I knocked in a couple of hundreds with it yesterday.
“I get an ‘MOT’ on it every couple of years just to make sure it is in the right condition.”