It may have taken Scott Donaldson 11 attempts to finally record a win this season but as rewards go, a glamour clash against the all-conquering Mark Selby isn’t a bad one.
Donaldson has always been a far better player than his ten losses from ten this term suggested – as proven by the fact he reached the semi-finals of a ranking event, the Welsh Open, as recently as February – but he should be able to play with added freedom now his unwanted streak is over.
The Edinburgh cueman held his nerve to dispatch John Astley 6-2 in the first round of the Betway UK Championship late on Wednesday evening as breaks of 93, 117 and 129 gave him a winning feeling he had not experienced since early April.
The 23-year-old now faces a second-round tie against world No.1, three-time world champion and reigning UK champion Selby on Saturday afternoon.
The duo actually met in the first round of the English Open in Barnsley last month, with Selby edging a decider to triumph 4-3, so the Scot should enter the contest with no fear.
Donaldson wasn’t the only Edinburgh potter in late-night action at the York Barbican on Wednesday, but Ross Muir came out on the wrong end of a 6-5 thriller against Michael White of Wales. Muir led 3-1 at one stage, but world No.26 White battled back and eventually produced a break of 73 when it mattered most to clinch the decider.
• Watch LIVE coverage of the UK Championship on Eurosport and Eurosport Player with Colin Murray and analysis from Jimmy White and Neal Foulds.