Amazing Davis comeback sinks O’Sullivan

Snooker star Mark Davis produced a stunning comeback to beat the great Ronnie O’Sullivan in a televised contest tonight (Wednesday).

The St Leonards-based potter recovered from 3-0 down to beat five-time world champion O’Sullivan 4-3 in a Welsh Open second round tie screened live on Eurosport.

In his post-match interview with the television broadcaster, Davis said: “Any time you beat Ronnie is unbelievable, but to do it from 3-0 down is incredible. I’m over the moon, I’ve not beaten him for a long time.

“If Ronnie comes out and plays well, I don’t win 99 times out of 100. I was confident tonight and I tried my hardest every shot, but you need a bit of help from him because he’s that good. You can’t really miss anything against him.”

Davis hadn’t beaten O’Sullivan in a ranking event since way back in 2001 and that record looked all set to continue as O’Sullivan won the opening three frames in less than 40 minutes with Davis scoring just 40 points in total.

World number 31 Davis got in first during the opening two frames with good pots only to then miss reds he would have expected to make and find himself punished by O’Sullivan breaks of 97 and 74. Davis had a couple of half chances in frame three before O’Sullivan made a 44 to clinch it 77-0.

O’Sullivan, who claimed the last of his four Welsh Open titles just 12 months ago, failed to pot a ball in two of the next three frames, though, as Davis showed a tremendous never-say-die attitude to fight his way back into the match.

After a safety exchange at the start of frame four, Davis potted a good opening red to the middle and went on to make a splendid 65 break to get himself on the scoreboard.

Davis fashioned a good run of 46 to go 38 points ahead in the fifth before O’Sullivan fought back to leave things neck-and-neck heading on to the colours. Davis was unfortunate to go in-off when potting the green, but O’Sullivan then missed the same ball to the middle and Davis cleared from green to pink to make it 3-2.

The 44-year-old Davis rattled through frame six in a single visit with an impressive break of 81, which again stemmed from a terrific opening red, to level at 3-3.

Davis scored the opening 20 points in the decider and a subsequent break of 64 sealed one of the finest wins of his long career, continuing a day of shock results at the Motorpoint Arena in Cardiff.

Reigning world seniors champion Davis will face Irish potter Fergal O’Brien in the last 32 tomorrow (Thursday) lunchtime.

Davis isn’t the only local player going strong in the Welsh capital. Bexhill cueman Jimmy Robertson is also through to round three following a good 4-2 win over Elliot Slessor earlier today.

Slessor, conqueror of two-time world champion and home favourite Mark Williams in round one, began the match with a 94 break, but Robertson surged back with marvellous breaks of 108 and 66 to take a 2-1 lead.

World number 38 Robertson narrowly lost the fourth frame to be pegged back to 2-2, but won a similarly close fifth to lead again and clinched the sixth 72-16 to seal victory.

Robertson will face Scottish player Scott Donaldson in the last 32, and if he and Davis both win their third round matches, they will play each other in the last 16 tomorrow evening.

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