Snooker star reunited with cue - and he makes the most of it
Snooker star Mark Davis made the most of being reunited with his cue by producing a splendid performance on Saturday.
The world number 40 from St Leonards suffered the anguish of his cue going missing in a car park on Friday September 25, prompting him to withdraw from the European Masters - which he was playing in at the time.
Fortunately, the cue was returned to Davis within 24 hours - and he took full advantage by topping Championship League stage one group 30 just a week later.
The 48-year-old did so in impressive style too, recording two 3-0 victories and a 2-2 draw in his three matches at Stadium MK in Milton Keynes.
Davis told the World Snooker Tour website, wst.tv: "It was really good to get the cue back. I'd been playing really well since just before the World Championship, so I didn't want to lose the cue. It was a great relief to get it back and obviously it was a good day today."
He sealed top spot in the group with an excellent 3-0 victory over former World Championship runner-up Ali Carter in a match where whoever won would advance.
Carter, ranked 17th, scored just 10 points across the three frames as Davis fashioned breaks of 121 and 100 in the last two.
Davis earlier whitewashed amateur Jamie Curtis-Barrett 3-0, helped by runs of 60 and 61, and won the last frame to earn a draw against Chinese potter Chang Bingyu, who had breaks of 56 and 86.
"I'm really pleased because that was a tough group," Davis added. "Chang is a really good player - I've played him a couple of times before and knew how good he is. Every group is tough with such short matches and I'm really pleased to get through."
Davis will go forward to stage two group H on Thursday October 29. Stage two will lead on to stage three and then the final, both of which will be played the following day.
Bexhill-based Jimmy Robertson also competed in stage one last week, but a pair of 3-1 defeats and a 3-1 victory weren't enough to progress from group 23.
The world number 26 lost to Mark King and David Grace, who knocked in two centuries, after defeating Allan Taylor.
Former European Masters champion Robertson and Davis will next be in action at the English Open in Milton Keynes next week.
Davis is due to face Daniel Wells - who was withdrawn from the Championship League after testing positive for coronavirus last Friday - and Robertson will play Chinese cueman Chen Zifan in round one on Tuesday.