Neil Robertson defends Hossein Vafaei after ‘disappointing’ reaction to Crucible comments

Has Hossein Vafaei been unfairly criticised for his Crucible comments? (Picture: Getty Images)

Neil Robertson feels that some reaction to Hossein Vafaei’s Crucible criticism has been ‘really disappointing’ and believes British players have said much worse without as much retaliation.

Vafaei ruffled some feathers by slamming the home of the World Snooker Championship, saying the Sheffield venue ‘smells really bad’ and the practice rooms feel like being in a garage.

‘You want to go somewhere really nice as a player, you walk around the Crucible and it smells really bad,’ Vafaei said after an opening round defeat to Judd Trump.

‘As a player I’m honest, it’s just really bad. Everything’s so bad. You go to other venues in other countries and you see how nice they treat you. Everything is shiny. But here it’s completely different.

‘If you ask me do I want to come back here again, I tell you no way. The practice room, do you see anything special? I feel like I’m practicing in a garage.’

The response from the likes of Shaun Murphy, Jimmy White and Alan McManus has been heavily critical.

Murphy encouraged Vafaei not to come back to the Crucible if he doesn’t like it, while White labelled the comments ‘pathetic’.

2024 Cazoo World Snooker Championship - Day 1

Vafaei was asked for his take on the Crucible in a post-match press conference (Picture: Getty Images)

However, Robertson has ridden the defence of the Iranian, saying he is getting unfairly criticised for his comments, when others have said worse to a much lesser response.

‘Some of the comments towards what Hossein Vafaei said regarding the Crucible, which are all true (maybe not the smell part)🤷‍♂️ is really disappointing,’ the Australian posted on social media.

‘We’ve seen far worse comments from British based players about the same venue and others that were laughed off or swept under the carpet by those who put their boot into him.

‘This is a guy btw who I’ve seen play matches with no sleep for 30 hours because he’s had to travel through multiple different countries just to get a visa in time. He has it the hardest on tour by a mile.’

Neil Robertson feels Vafaei has been hit harder than others have been for his comments (Picture: Getty Images)

Robertson added: ‘The way what he said could have been better and there isn’t much value in complaining about something after you have lost as that only comes across one way (🍇😂) but the reaction was really disappointing.

‘We all know what the issues are with the Crucible and World Snooker have done everything to make it as good for the players as possible so it’s not about that.’

Jimmy White and Alan McManus blast ‘pathetic’ Hossein Vafaei Crucible criticism

MORE : Mark Selby still considering retirement as ‘mental block’ makes snooker miserable

For more stories like this, check our sport page.

Follow Metro Sport for the latest news on
Twitter and Instagram.