Mark Selby threatens to quit snooker after ‘pathetic’ defeat to Gary Wilson

By Sports Desk April 02, 2024

Four-time world champion Mark Selby threatened to quit snooker after losing in the Tour Championship to Gary Wilson, who also described his winning performance as “embarrassing”.

Wilson sealed a 10-8 victory with a clearance of 105, but both players were scathing about their performance in Manchester.

“I mean I was pathetic really, from start to finish,” Selby told ITV4. “Probably one of the worst games I’ve played as a professional. Definitely up there for sure.

“If I carry on playing like that, then yeah, I won’t be enjoying it and I will be choosing a different career for sure.

“Neither of us played great in the second session, Gary played well on Monday and deserved his 5-3 lead. Today neither of us played great. I was like that all match. I deserved to lose.

“I will give the World Championship a go, but if I keep playing like that, I’m not going to carry on.”

Wilson believes he will have to improve ahead of his quarter-final against Zhang Anda, telling ITV4: “I don’t know how I won to be honest. I’m just thankful Mark didn’t play very well because I was embarrassing.

“The cue action wasn’t even there yesterday – it may have looked a bit better but I just felt deep down all along, I was struggling. I was hitting everything really quick and snatchy and just tried to keep plugging away.”

Reminded that he had made breaks of 95, 98, 78 and 101 in taking a 5-3 lead from Monday’s opening session and must therefore have been cueing well, Wilson replied: “Incorrect.

“I was not cueing very well at all but I can score when I’m not cueing well. That was feeling really bad and it was feeling even worse today and that’s why I missed so many easy balls, gave him so many chances and lifelines.

“Really, if I’d been playing decent and Mark had played as bad as he did there, I should have won that 10-3, 10-4. It was that bad it became really close and I’m just thankful he didn’t play very well either.

“I’m not enjoying it but we go again on Thursday and I’m just hoping I can find something between now and then.”

Ali Carter will face bitter rival Ronnie O’Sullivan in the quarter-finals after holding off a spirited fightback from Barry Hawkins.

Carter raced into a 7-1 lead after Hawkins had won the opening frame, but the left-hander won seven of the first nine frames in the evening session, including taking the 17th frame on a respotted black after needing two snookers.

However, Carter held his nerve to win the next and seal a 10-8 victory which sets up a showdown with O’Sullivan, 11 weeks after the pair were involved in a war of words following the Masters final won by O’Sullivan.

“I relish the challenge now because he’s the best player ever to pick up a cue,” Carter told ITV4. “To play him in another quarter-final, I’ve played him in a final this year, I’m in the right place.”

Mark Williams produced a superb clearance of 66 in the deciding frame to edge out Tom Ford 10-9 and set up a quarter-final with Judd Trump.

“I was dead on my feet for the last hour and three quarters, I was absolutely shattered,” said Williams, who has just returned from a trip to China.

“I thought it was all over. Where that clearance in the last frame came from I do not know. It was probably one of the best clearances I’ve done.”

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