Mark Davis believes he can channel his UK Snooker Championship run of two years ago in the quarter-finals after avoiding a potential banana skin by beating teenage starlet James Cahill.
The St Leonards cueman had squeezed past Joe Perry 6-5 in a scrappy third round clash on Tuesday night and faced the unknown in world no.100 Cahill, who had seen off two-time UK champion Ding Junhui in his own third round match.
But Davis ended Cahill’s dream run last night (Wednesday) with an efficient display to win 6-2 – and kept his own hopes of matching his semi-final appearance at the Barbican in 2012 alive.
Awaiting in York tomorrow is either Judd Trump or Rod Lawler and, as far as Davis is concerned, he’s approaching somewhere back to his best.
“I felt a lot better in myself. I’m still missing far too many balls, although I can’t complain too much - I won,” he said. “But I felt a lot better than I had done in previous matches and it never comes easy to me like it does with some players.
“I’m really having to focus, but I did feel quite well out there with the two table set-up and maybe the memories of two years ago brought out the best in me.
“I don’t know about fatigue, but (Cahill) has had an amazing result from an amazing game. His phone’s probably been going mental, and now he’s had to come out and play a game straight away. He could have probably done with a day off, but it’s difficult - he’s a 19-year-old kid and it’s all learning for him.”
Davis could not potentially face two players of more contrasting styles in the next round, as the destructive former UK champion Trump meets a calm and considered Lawler.
He added: “Everyone knows Judd, he’s one of the best players in the world and plays a great game. I said earlier the game’s lucky to have him and he’s going to be around for the next 10, 20 years. I think he’s a nice guy and the way he plays is exciting, he entertains the crowd.
“Rod is similar to me, he’s probably been around just as long as I have and he’s very tough. You’ve got to be on your game to beat him. He beat Mark (Allen) last round, so if he can beat Mark, he can beat anyone.”
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