Jimmy White and Stephen Hendry
White (left) lost to old rival Hendry last week

Jimmy White has been given an invitational tour card for the next two seasons on the World Snooker Tour.

The Englishman, 58, lost to old rival Stephen Hendry last week in the first round of qualifying for this year’s World Championship.

Defeat meant the Six-time World Championship runner-up would drop off the tour at the end of the season.

The World Snooker Tour said it was recognising White’s “outstanding contribution to the sport”.

“Jimmy is one of snooker’s one-time greats, not only in terms of his achievements on the table, but also in his massive worldwide popularity,” WST chairman Barry Hearn and World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association chairman Jason Ferguson said.

“He has done so much to promote snooker through his playing style and charisma. He remains a great asset to our sport and we had no hesitation in offering him a tour card for the 2021-22 and 2022-23 seasons.”

White said he was “very grateful for this opportunity”.

He is one of four invitational tour card holders next season – seven-time world champion Hendry, 1997 champion Ken Doherty and two-time semi-finalist Marco Fu are the others.

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