Musselburgh's Ross Muir fights back to reach last 32 in Belfast

Ross Muir was delighted his new-found strong mentality shone through after coming from behind to reach the Dafabet Northern Ireland Open third round.

Thursday, 23rd November 2017, 5:30 am
Updated Monday, 11th December 2017, 11:19 pm
Ross Muir has a chance of reaching his first-ever ranking quarter-final

The Musselburgh potter rallied from 2-1 down to overcome Englishman Stuart Carrington, prevailing 4-2 in Belfast’s Waterfront Hall to take his place in the last-32.

That means today could be a pivotal day in the season of the 22-year-old, facing the prospect of two matches and a potential first ranking quarter-final of his career.

First comes a tough task against world No.25 David Gilbert. However, it’s a match he sees as winnable so long as his errors are cut out.

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“I felt really good at the start but made a couple of really sloppy mistakes, let the white go and there were a couple of frames where basic errors crept in and I was suddenly 2-1 down,” he said.

“So to come back from that is pleasing. Any win against Stuart is nice and I’ll just take the positives from that one into the next one.

“I just have to work on those small lapses in concentration that almost cost me, but it didn’t irritate me, instead it made me focus more.

“I’ve made those mistakes because I haven’t focused – whoever you’re playing you’re going to get chances so I was patient, tried to not be punished and made the most of it.

“It’s easier said than done, of course, but with all the years of playing snooker I’ve done pretty well at teaching myself not to lose my head.”

Despite taking the opening frame, Muir quickly found himself 2-1 down, a position where some people would have crumbled in the best-of-seven encounter.

But the world No. 110 has shown himself to be made of meaner stuff in recent times.

That was to shine through spectacularly in the game’s latter stages, with breaks of 74, 60 and 66 taking him to the third round.

• Watch the Northern Ireland Open LIVE on Eurosport, Eurosport Player and Quest with Colin Murray and daily studio analysis with Neal Foulds.