Saturday 19 August 2017

dott goes the distance in crucible opener

snooker: Crucible thoroughbred Graeme Dott led a Scottish charge at the Crucible yesterday as he made the most of the longer matches which suit his 'Grand National' style.

The 37-year-old, a qualifier this year, survived a series of twitches close to the winning line before clinching a 10-8 first-round victory over Ricky Walden at the Betfred World Championship.

He bungled a yellow but was reprieved when Walden blazed the green off the table. And although Walden scoured for snookers, his tournament was over once Dott dropped in the blue.

The best-of-seven frame tussles that are increasingly commonplace do not suit Dott, but the marathon of the Crucible plays to his strengths.

"It's got to suit me," Dott said. "If you compare it to horse racing, I'm a Grand National horse but all I'm ever running is seven furlongs - it's just not long enough. It's nice to know you can still do it at the Crucible. I'm 37 and when you don't qualify you think maybe that's me finished. I played a good game and I'm delighted to win."

Hong Kong's Marco Fu booked his place in the second round, beating Jimmy Robertson 10-6.

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