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Fenland cueman Perry secures World Championship spot

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Fenland professional Joe Perry has booked a place in the final stages of the World Snooker Championship – 20 years after he qualified for the first time.

Joe Perry is heading back to the Crucible after qualifying for the World Championship
Joe Perry is heading back to the Crucible after qualifying for the World Championship

The 44-year-old completed a 10-3 victory over Martin O’Donnell in the final qualifying round at the English Institute of Sport in Sheffield this evening, having held a 6-3 advantage overnight.

Perry, who made his debut at the world-famous Crucible Theatre in 1999 and will be playing in his 15th World Championship, has lost just five frames in three qualifying matches over the past week.

But he told World Snooker’s live coverage that he had been disappointed with his performance in the opening session on Tuesday evening.

He said: “It’s job done and on to the next one.

“I played poorly last night. Even though I had a 6-3 lead, the game didn’t suit me. I got bogged down, I missed easy balls when I had the chance to kill frames off which meant the games ran another 20, 30 minutes so I was fully focused tonight.

“I was determined not to miss easy balls and when the chance comes take it.”

Perry, who is currently ranked 18th in the world, will be the highest ranked qualifier in the draw for the first round when it is made tomorrow morning.

The former Crucible semi-finalist and Masters finalist caused a massive upset 12 months ago when he knocked out the then reigning champion Mark Selby on the opening day of the championship.

And he thinks the top seeds will not want to play him this time either.

He said: “When I was a seed, I’d always prefer to play a rookie over someone who’s been there before so I guess in that sense there’s other people they’d rather play than me.”

The tournament begins at the Crucible on Saturday morning.

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