Belfast Telegraph

Swail’s World Championship dream ends at the hands of Doherty

Former winner Ken Doherty blazed his way through to the first round of the Betfred.com World Championship and revealed Steve Davis was inspiring him to turn his career around.

Doherty made short work of beating his good friend and fellow 40-year-old Joe Swail 10-1 in the final round of qualifying.

Belfast man Swail had needed to win to remain in the top 32 in the world, as had Doherty.

The Dubliner, who beat Stephen Hendry in the 1997 Crucible final, opened up an 8-1 lead in the first session and swiftly converted that into victory to seal his place in Thursday's draw for the televised stages.

Doherty failed to qualify for the World Championship last year but his relishing his 17th visit as a player.

“I missed it terribly. I was in tears almost last year when I lost. I didn't know where my game was going and it was a real down time for me,” he said.

“I always thought it was a premature end, it couldn't be like that and I had a lot more to offer.”

Davis, at 52, will be appearing at the home of snooker for the 30th time after beating Adrian Gunnell yesterday and the six-time world champion continues to amaze.

“I take a lot of inspiration from the likes of Steve and Jimmy, great characters, players and ambassadors for the game,” he said.

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