Ken Doherty battles back to stay in touch with Stuart Bingham at the Crucible
The 1997 world champion Ken Doherty kissed the theatre's carpet on his way into the arena for his tussle with Stuart Bingham at the World Championship in Sheffield today.
Doherty has failed to qualify in three of the last five years but earned a place this time by beating last year's clown prince of the Crucible, Thailand's Dechawat Poomjaeng.
The 44-year-old, the oldest man in the draw, was in trouble when he fell 3-0 behind Bingham, but the 'Darling of Dublin', who usually presents a radio show on Saturday mornings, made his presence felt as he mounted a fightback.
The session was in the balance until Bingham pinched the eighth frame to guarantee himself a lead. It will be with only a slender advantage that he resumes on Sunday, however, after Doherty took frame nine with a flourish to trail 5-4 overnight.