Gould drops re­tire­ment plans af­ter win

The Daily Telegraph - Business - - Sport -

Martin Gould ripped up his re­tire­ment speech af­ter cruis­ing into the sec­ond round of the World Cham­pi­onship with a 10-3 vic­tory over ninth seed Stephen Maguire.

The 38-year-old was ready to quit the game af­ter en­dur­ing what he de­scribed as a “dark place” and be­ing far from cer­tain of re­tain­ing his pro­fes­sional tour card for next sea­son. But af­ter wrap­ping up his first win at the

Cru­cible since 2011 over Tour Cham­pi­onship win­ner Maguire, which in­cluded four cen­turies in the open­ing ses­sion, Gould re­vealed he will hold off on his de­ci­sion.

Gould said: “I knew ex­actly what I was go­ing to say and there was go­ing to be no chang­ing my mind. But now it’s in the bin. I loved it out there. For about a year and a half I didn’t en­joy be­ing out there, and when you’re not en­joy­ing what you’ve loved do­ing for so many years it’s time to go and do some­thing else.”

Barry Hawkins, the 2013 fi­nal­ist, won the three straight frames re­quired to com­plete a 10-2 win over Switzer­land’s Alexan­der Ursen­bacher, then ad­mit­ted he had been “get­ting a lit­tle bit sick of snooker” prior to lock­down. Four-time win­ner John Hig­gins trails Kurt Maflin 5-3 in their sec­on­dround match while Mark Wil­liams es­tab­lished a 5-3 lead over Stu­art Bing­ham.

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