REBECCA Kenna reckons that she has seen the future of women's snooker.

The Keighley woman, who has climbed to No 3 in the world rankings after reaching the semi-finals of the British Open last weekend, is referring to Nutcharat Wongharuthai.

Kenna, who has moved above Maria Catalano in the standings, had a close-up look at the 18-year-old Thai as they faced each other in the group stages at the Stourbridge Institute.

Wongharuthai lost 2-1, but Kenna said: "She is definitely a top-five player in the world, but she hasn't got the ranking as the only ranking tournament that she has only played in previously was last year's World Championship.

"We had a very close match, and I lost the first frame on the black, while in the second frame there were a few little breaks and a lot of safety, and I won a tight third frame on the blue."

The potential of the Thai teenager, who won the world under-21 title in 2016 and was runner-up in the world under-18s the same year, could be seen as she advanced to the British Open final.

Nutcharat defeated world No 3 Catalano 3-0 in the last 16, world No 6 Katrina Wan (Hong Kong) 3-1 in the quarter-finals and new world No 1 Ng On Yee (Hong Kong) 4-2 (she overtook long-time world No 1 Reanne Evans by reaching the quarter-finals) in the semi-finals before losing 4-0 in the final to new world No 2 Evans.

Kenna, meanwhile, won her other group match 3-0 against Yvette Greenway, and beat Burley-in-Wharfedale's improving world No 14 Aimee Benn 3-0 in the last 16 and world No 12 Jaique Ip (Hong Kong) 3-0 in the quarter-finals.

In the semi-finals, Kenna faced Evans, and won the first frame on the black before her opponent made breaks of 103 and 102 in a 4-1 defeat – the two biggest breaks of the tournament.

"It is the first time that I have ever been hit by two century breaks in the same match," said the Keighley woman.

Now she can look forward to the World Ladies Billiards & Snooker (WLBS) World Championships at the Dolmen Hotel in Malta on March 14-17, which is part of the new international federation, the World Snooker Federation (WSF) Championships.

"If I get through to the last eight, there is an extra singles tournament involving eight women and eight men (the WSF Championships), which is also something to look forward to."

First prize for the women's event is 6,000 euros, and after that, on April 13-17, the Festival of World Women’s Snooker will return to the Northern Snooker Centre in Leeds.