Snooker ace James the first

Cahill - top of the pots
Cahill - top of the pots
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Blackpool potter James Cahill admits he even surprised himself after pulling off one of the shocks of the opening round at the UK Snooker Championship in York.

The 18-year-old was pitted against world No.30 Mark King at the Barbican and made light work of the veteran, racing to a 6-0 win and into the second round.

Cahill is not lacking confidence and he shouldn’t be after giving Ronnie O’Sullivan a fright at September’s International Championship qualifiers, before eventually losing 6-3.

However, he conceded the idea of whitewashing a player of King’s quality had not crossed his mind before stepping up to the baize at the Barbican.

“It’s a good result for me,” he said. “I was just hoping for a win and 6-0 is obviously better than what I expected. He is a great player but sometimes with snooker that’s the way it goes.

“It’s nice to play well in these tournaments. You just try to find form here and that’s what I’m trying to do.

“I have been timing it a lot better since I got home from the last tournament and I seemed to find a bit in practice, but you never know what’s going to happen when you get here.

“I played here last year, I know what to expect this year and if I play well then I feel like I can compete with the best.”

Cahill hit the ground running at the Barbican, easing into a 2-0 lead before overturning a 44-point deficit with a break of 84 to make it three.

He duly added the fourth frame but even at that point, when he and King broke for the mid-session interval, the teenager was not ready to drop his levels.

Having been burnt before – back in October of last year by China’s Cao Yupeng – Cahill was desperate to ensure the opportunity didn’t slip.

“Even at 4-0 with a player of his class, I went out thinking I’ve still got to play well and luckily it went my way,” he added. “I’ve had that done to me a few times.

“I played Cao Yupeng and I was playing really well. I came back out after the interval and I couldn’t pot a ball – and I was just hoping that it didn’t happen this time.

“Luckily I came out and he gave me a few chances. I haven’t played exceptionally but I took what he gave me and I’ll take it every day of the week.”

*British Eurosport is the Home of Snooker, showing 19 tournaments per season including the World Championship, UK Championship, the Masters and all other ranking events. Available on Sky, Virgin Media & BT TV or online/mobile via eurosportplayer.com #eurosportsnooker.