Sadly, there was to be no glory for Cambridgeshire snooker players Neil Robertson and Joe Perry at the World Championships in Sheffield.
Robertson reaches quarter-finals
Robertson, who is based in Cambridge and is ranked world number 3, exited the competition at the quarter-final stage to the 2020 runner-up, Kyren Wilson. The match was evenly poised at 8 frames each going into the last session, but Wilson pulled ahead, winning 5 frames on the bounce to clinch a 13-8 victory and progress to the semi-finals.
Despite his victories over Liang Wenbo and Jack Lisowski in the first and second rounds, the result will be a bitter disappointment for Robertson, who was widely tipped to do well at this year’s championships, especially after the early exit of favourite Ronnie O’Sullivan.
Although Robertson, who originates from Melbourne, Australia, will be disappointed, it doesn’t disguise the success he had earlier in the season when he claimed the UK Championship courtesy of 10-9 victory over Judd Trump.
Early exit for Perry, but a chance in the commentary box
Meanwhile Joe Perry, who was born in Wisbech and now lives in Chatteris, is currently ranked 20th in the world. But he failed to get through the qualifying stages for the second year running, being eliminated by Welshman Jamie Clarke.
Despite not making it to the Crucible Theatre for the main tournament as a player, he did find another route by making his World Championship debut in the commentary box. Perry was often heard alongside the likes of John Virgo and Dennis Taylor, guiding BBC viewers through the action.
The event in Sheffield was one of the first test events to allow spectators through the door as the country continues its exit from lockdown. The first-round matches were played in front of a 30% capacity, which rose as the tournament went on, reaching 100% capacity for the final.
WORDS Andrew Dunn