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Fighting Jack Lisowski ready to take World Championship by storm

| 18.04.2013

Five years ago playing at the Crucible would have been the furthest thing from Jack Lisowski’s mind, but now the 21-year-old is ready to star in Sheffield.

The cancer survivor was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma as a teenager, but having fully recovered to turn professional at 18 he’ll take his place at the home of snooker for this year’s World Championship after coming through qualifying.

The Englishman, who is 50/1 to record a fairytale tournament victory, beat two-time Crucible semi-finalist James Wattana before seeing off Ireland’s former British Open winner Fergal O’Brien 10-4 in a dominant qualifying performance on Saturday, recording breaks of 114, 131 and 100 in the process.

Having impressed both there and in the recent China Open the world number 37 will be full of confidence entering his first World Championship.

Lisowski beat his former flatmate Judd Trump on the way to reaching the quarter-finals of the ranking tournament in Beijing, where he eventually lost to the 2005 World Champion Shaun Murphy – who remains only the second qualifier to lift the trophy in the tournament’s 86-year history.

Such a feat might prove to be beyond Lisowski at such a fledgling stage of his career, but the Cheltenham-born potter will be given great heart with his somewhat kind first round draw against Barry Hawkins.

Ranked 15th of the 16 seeded players in the tournament, Hawkins has only reached the second round on two of his seven Crucible appearances.

The 33-year-old from Kent has often found the World Championship to be too tough an arena to excel in, and a win for Lisowski would see his odds to win the tournament dramatically shortern.

At 50/1 he currently represents an intriguing each-way shout, for his inspiring life story alone.

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Author

Mark Jones