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Joe Swail keen to live Crucible dream and join the snooker elite

Joe Swail is just three wins away from his dream of a return to the Crucible Theatre for the World Championship, which starts on Saturday week.

Belfast cueman Swail  takes on China's Zhang Yong over the best of 19 frames today at the Ponds Forge Sports Centre in Sheffield.

The battle to join the elite top 16 at the Crucible will be fierce, with big names like Ding Junhui and Ali Carter fighting it out with greats of the game such as Jimmy White and Steve Davis.

Swail, twice a World Championship semi-finalist, said: "The standard now is just so high and it would be a dream for me to get through the three matches and play at the Crucible again.

"It's going to be incredibly tough for the 16 qualifiers because they will be going to the Crucible with virtually no break after three long matches."

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