Published: 08:22, 17 January 2018 |
Ditton's Barry Hawkins insists he played better than opponent Kyren Wilson - despite crashing out in the first round of the Dafabet Masters.
The former World Championship finalist scored two centuries and an 85 but bad luck in the final two frames sent him crashing out 6-4.
Hawkins almost pulled out of the match due to illness so was left buoyed by his display, even though he looked on in frustration as Wilson fluked a frame-deciding red and landed a fortunate snooker on his way to win.
“I think I played better than him, I know that sounds mad but I was 2-1 up and on a break of 33 when I decelerated on a red and missed," the left-hander said.
"If I went on and got 3-1 up then you never know.
“I don’t think it was a bad game, there were a couple of scrappy frames at the end and he had some luck on his side.
“I thought I played well considering I was in bed the day before. Last night I was in bits, I was shivering and shaking so I was pleased with the way I did in the end."
Hawkins began the match in style by firing in a superb 131 but Wilson, making just his second appearance at Alexandra Palace, responded with a break of 56 in the second.
Hawkins was clearly in good touch as he made 120 to win the third but in a high-quality match Wilson took the initiative and won three of the next four frames with two centuries of his own.
Now 38, Hawkins is a seasoned campaigner and knows how to handle pressure and he pulled level at 4-4 with an expert 85.
But luck favoured Wilson, with a fluked red in the ninth allowing him to move a frame clear again before he won the match in the next when he accidentally put Hawkins in a snooker he could not escape from.
“It was gutting, Kyren likes to go for his long balls and that one in the ninth turned the game. If I got 5-4 up, I might win the match but he had the run of balls before the end,” Hawkins added.
“I left him a free ball in the last one so it was a horrible way to lose. He was just hitting and hoping and it was unbelievable really.
“My season’s been bad but I think my form is coming back slowly, so I was gutted when I felt ill but I thought I dug in and did well.”
Watch the London Masters LIVE on Eurosport and Eurosport Player with Colin Murray and analysis from Neil Robertson, Jimmy White and Neal Foulds.
Every morning at 10am we play you an hour of tunes from the 90s. We call it, #WeLoveThe90s.
Play 'Say It' with Garry and Laura on kmfm Breakfast and you could win £1,000!
Wake up to kmfm Breakfast with Garry and Laura - it's Kent's alarm call.
Your No1 guide to getting married in Kent. From dresses to discos and venues to veils, we've got everything you could possibly need for your big day
Education, Training & Childcare is a special supplement published by KM Media Group four times a year. Click here for latest e-edition.
A guide for your future. For year 11 students in Kent and Medway. Click here for the e-edition.
Get the latest food and drink news, recipes from some of the nation's top chefs plus updates from Kent's vineyards and breweries.
Search in your local area to find your perfect partner in Kent, with FreshStart Dating!
PLUS, register for free!.
Read our pick of the best holiday destinations. Whether its a weekend break, or something a little bit longer, we have reviewed a wide range of holidays.