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Snooker: BLACK HANN; Crucible heat is too hard to bear as Aussie wild man Quinten shows dark side.


WILD man Quinten Hann unleashed his demons on the Crucible yesterday.

The former male model has an ugly side which kicks in when he's under pressure.

Previously, during a match against Stephen Lee in Ireland huffy Hann conceded a frame with 13 reds left on the table.

But yesterday at Sheffield there was no sign of frustration as the Aussie won frame three to trail 2-1 against Paul Hunter in the opening session of their Embassy World Championship first-round clash.

He even shared a joke with referee Jan Verhaas when the half-butt became tangled up in a pocket.

But after ninth seed Hunter had moved 4-1 ahead, Hann broke off in frame six by smashing the cue ball into the pack of reds as if it was a game of pool.


The reds scattered across the table and inevitably double Masters champion Hunter was left with a simple chance to make a sizeable break, knocking in a 77 to extend his lead further.

Former world champion Dennis Taylor described Hann's shot as "bordering on ungentlemanly conduct" as the 24-year-old world No.25 - who is set to claim a place in the top 16 for next season - sat in his chair looking forlorn.

But rather than give up the fight as he had done against Ronnie O'Sullivan in the 2000 Grand Prix at Telford - earning a reprimand for unprofessional behaviour - Hann regrouped and won the next two frames to be 5-3 down.

Hunter, still recovering from an operation in which he had four non-malignant cysts removed from his testicles, then compiled a break of 73 to go into the final session as hot favourite.

Nottingham's Anthony Hamilton staged a fine recovery to hit back from 4-1 down to 5-4 ahead against Dave Harold, of Stoke.

World No.15 Harold, who has struggled badly this campaign and looks almost certain to lose his place in the top 16, started like a house on fire.

In the first five frames he recorded breaks of 101, 72 and, most significantly, a 135 which equalled the best of the tournament so far from Matthew Stevens.

But then Hamilton, known as the Robin Hood of snooker, got his act together and a run of 97 was the highlight as he captured four successive frames to hold the advantage for this morning's concluding session.

Former champion Mark Williams, seeded two, moved into a 6-3 at the end of his opening session against John Parrott.
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Apr 24, 2002
Next Article:Rugby: Glasgow 10 forced to call off.

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