Friday 24 November 2017

Snooker: Davis' world since 1979

After first round and quarter-final defeats, Davis won the tournament at his third attempt in 1981. An 18-12 win over Welshman Doug Mountjoy made Davis the second youngest champion. A surprise first-round exit to Tony Knowles preceded titles in 1983 and 1984, beating Cliff Thorburn and Jimmy White respectively, although it was the final loss to Dennis Taylor in 1985 that is more revered. Davis raced 8-0 ahead before Taylor levelled at 11-11. Frames were shared until 17-17. Davis overshot on the black, leaving Taylor to secure the title in a finish watched by 18.5m viewers. After losing to Joe Johnson in the 1986 final, Davis secured a hat-trick of titles to end a decade of dominance, thrashing John Parrott 18-3 for his sixth title in 1989. However, he has failed to make it past the second round in all but two of the last 15 years, and failed to qualify in 2001 and 2002.

-- James Mariner

Irish Independent

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