Amateur Jak Jones produced a stunning day’s snooker to knock out three professionals and reach the fourth round of Players Tour Championship 2 at the South West Snooker Academy in Gloucester.
Welshman Jones had already emerged through two preliminary qualifying rounds before the first round proper and he was intent in making the most of his efforts with a hard-fought 4-3 triumph over Anthony Hamilton.
Like Hamilton, the 18 year-old’s next opponent will be on the flight to the Shanghai Masters in September with Thailand’s James Wattana Jones’ latest victim.
The 2010 European Under-19 champion completed the remarkable day by ousting rookie Sam Craigie in what was arguably his easiest scoreline of 4-1.
Jones spent a season on the professional circuit last year but struggled throughout and finished near the bottom of the world rankings in May – resulting in him dropping of the Tour.
However, performances like this will encourage the youngster to avail of one of the eight professional spots available for the best performing amateurs on the PTC Order of Merit following all twelve events of the series.
The teenager will meet Rory McLeod on Wednesday after the Englishman dispatched of another exciting teen, Luca Brecel, in the Last 32 4-3.
Ireland’s Ken Doherty progressed to the third round with wins over Northern Ireland’s Joe Meara and world number one Mark Williams – the latter encounter probably being the match of the day with the 1997 world champion pinching a deciding frame thriller.
Butvisibly tired, the Darling of Dublin could not sustain his run late into the night, eventually falling to Scotland’s Jamie Burnett 4-2.
Burnett will play Xiao Guodong for a place in the quarter-finals after the Chinese cueist knocked out another amateur Craig Steadman 4-2.
Steadman had earlier defeated ‘Whirlwind’ Jimmy White and former ranking event champion Ricky Walden.
Seasoned campaigner Dave Harold was the surprise package of the day behind Jones – the 44 year-old enjoying victories over the talented amateur Ben Harrison, in form Nigel Bond and six-time world champion Steve Davis.
Harold, who won the 1993 Asian Open, will next meet Welshman Ryan Day, a player who continues to show signs of resurgence after a couple of years in the doldrums.
Elsewhere, Graeme Dott edged Tom Ford 4-3. The Scotsman will play Ding Junhui after the defending Masters champion ousted Marcus Campbell beyond midnight.
Finally, Barry Pinches will undoubtedly have difficulty sleeping tonight as he joins the Ken Doherty and Robin Hull club of players who have missed the final black for a maximum break of 147.
Pinches had a straight forward black to complete his second professional 147 but agonizingly rattled it in the jaws for a heartbreaking conclusion to what was obviously a masterfully constructed break.