Look out World, here I come!

New UK snooker champion Ding Junhui believes that he has a good chance of being in the running for the World Championship now that he has found his form and regained his confidence. The win at the weekend ended a three-year drought of ranking tournament victories, during which he nearly fell from the top 16, and now the Chinese star feels like a contender again.

‘When I nearly slipped out of top 16, I had a lot of pressure,’ Ding said to The Guardian. ‘It came as a bit of a shock. I went away for the summer and did little. The previous two years I had done too much in the summer. This time I allowed myself to relax and travel around China. It has made me feel better.

‘I was playing too much snooker out of the season, like exhibitions. I had a good rest and recharged the batteries. But this season I have been working hard in practice to get my game back to what it was two or three years ago. I was practising six or seven hours every day with no break going into the UK Championship. This win has given me a lot of confidence for the world championship. I know now how to win again and that is very important. I have got a lot more experience from playing with the best players.’

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