TWO-TIME runner-up Ali Carter is aiming for a long run in the snooker World Championships after book his place in the second round yesterday.
The Colchester-born player avoided a first round banana skin as he secured a 10-8 win over qualifier Xiao Guodong, who had threatened to cause an upset when the score was 8-8.
But after securing victory at the Crucible, 34-year-old Carter is plotting another run deep into the tournament in Sheffield.
“When you've been through what I’ve been through, there’s no fear,” said Carter, who recovered from testicular cancer last summer. “I’m delighted to be here.”
Chinese debutant Xiao trailed 5-4 after Saturday’s first session but clawed it back to level at 8-8 and was threatening to cause a first-round shock.
But Carter rifled in an 80 break to go one frame away from victory, and seized on an error from Xiao to take the upper hand in the next on the way to clinching a 10-8 win.
Carter was impressed by Xiao, who at 25 is making good on his potential, reaching the Shanghai Masters final earlier this season, but also delighted with his own performance.
“He played well and solid and doesn’t look like he’s under pressure,” Carter said.
“All credit to me for making an 80 break and playing a granite last frame there.
“Every time I was on the floor I picked myself up and did it. I seem to be able to do that and that's good.”
Carter plays Mark Selby or Michael White in the second round next week.
World champion Ronnie O’Sullivan saw off Robin Hull 10-4 but Carter’s other fellow Essex professional, Stuart Bingham, lost 10-5 to 1997 world champion Ken Doherty.
The Irishman qualified to make the Crucible and trailed 5-4 after the first session.
But he reeled off six frames in a row to secure his place in the second round.