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Hill Breezes past Stevens after shock Rocket win


Aaron Hill

Aaron Hill

Aaron Hill

They call him 'the Breeze' for his ability to remain calm as the storm rages.

And anyone who witnessed Aaron Hill announce himself on snooker's world stage with a final-frame victory against the world champion Ronnie O'Sullivan, will appreciate the sobriquet.

Yesterday he kept his run going, defeating Welsh veteran Matthew Stevens 5-3 in a gritty tie.

At the European Masters the 18-year-old has demonstrated the two qualities needed to succeed in this game: nerves of steel and the quality to take your chances.

His father encouraged the youngster from Cathedral Road to pick up a cue and the results were instantaneous, announcing himself with victory in the Under-14 Irish National Championship in 2016. He secured titles at U-16, U-18, and U-21 level before claiming the European U-21 title, and an elusive tour card.

Hill seems possessed of a steely determination and an attacking game which, even with an unorthodox style, is paramount in the modern age.

Yesterday he was far away from the TV lights, battling in a different type of game and coming through.

However, it will be the rest of the season which will define him. With his swashbuckling style and imperturbable mentality, his progress will be fascinating to watch.