RISING Irish snooker talent Davy Morris has finally qualified for a ranking tournament after three years as a professional.
And what a baptism of fire it has proven to be. The Kilkenny player makes his professional ranking debut today against world champion, Australian Neil Robertson.
The player, who lives in a house numbered 147, was in danger of becoming snooker’s nearly man, having failed to qualify for events at the final hurdle on six occasions.
However, he came through qualifying rounds against Robert Milkins and the highly rated Ben Woollaston to earn his place at his place at the World Open event at the SECC in Glasgow.
There he will line up alongside star names of the sport like Ronnie O’Sullivan and Ali Carter.
“There were a few times in the last qualifying round when I didn’t play well, so this time I just wanted to play well, and not think too much about winning. It was great to get over the line, and now I’ve done that I hope I can qualify for a few more venues,” he told worldsnooker.com.
The 21-year-old has finally lived up the promise he has shown from a young age. Following on from an exceptional junior record, where he was a winner at national level at U14, 16, 17, 18, 19 and 21 levels, as well as at senior level three times (he was the youngest winner of that event in 2004).
He also won the Irish Examiner junior sports star of the year three times. He has been a professional since 2007 and has improved his ranking each year.
He now stands at no 59 in the provisional list but is aiming a good deal higher than that, with a season target of the top 48.
Snooker is going through a major upheaval at the moment having brought on board snooker impresario Barry Hearn who has entirely revamped the sport for this season.
Players are getting a lot more games, though some of the events are unranked.
Morris is undaunted at the prospect of playing the star names. Prior to the World Championship qualifiers he told the Irish Examiner that he didn’t feel his fellow professionals are superior to him.
“It always comes down to if you can you do it on the day. At times I’ve played much higher-ranked players and I’ve hammered them, and other times I’ve played guys ranked lower and got hammered myself. Everyone knows it’s just the form of the day.”
© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved