Brexit is a big shock for Allen..
GUTTED Mark Allen saw his Masters title defence ended at the first hurdle yesterday.
The Antrim man crashed to a shock 6-5 defeat to Belgium’s Luca Brecel at London’s Ally Pally.
But he said he had “no complaints” after being dumped out in a quality first round curtain-raiser at snooker’s most prestigious invitational event.
“I’m very disappointed to lose,” said Allen.
“I definitely didn’t want to give my crown up as easily. But I’ve got no complaints. Luca played very well to beat me.
“His long potting was better than mine. I didn’t think I played badly, but there were just a few little errors here and there.”
The Pistol was always behind and found himself
3-1 down at the interval.
World No.15 Brecel was inspired by a new initiative of 10 minutes practice on the match table in front of the crowd, as he edged ahead with breaks of 75 and 50.
Allen hit back with 96 and 136 breaks to level and also battled back from 4-3 and 5-4 down to force a decider with 83 and 99 runs.
But Brecel, who had other breaks of 140 and 88, held his nerve to pocket a 58 run to win the decider.
However, despite having settled the slower of the two players, Allen believes snubbing the opportunity to practice on the match table had no influence on the result.
He stated: “I don’t think there’s any need for it. I’m not for it at all.
“A lot about being a professional snooker player is getting used to the table in the heat of battle.
“Being the defending champion, I wanted that introduction. I didn’t want to practice for 10 minutes in front of the fans.
“But that had absolutely no bearing on the result of the match.”
Brecel said: “It’s my biggest win. I’ve had a tough year on and off the table.
“Practicing on the table helped me settle down. I’m surprised Mark didn’t (practice).”
GUTTED Mark Allen after first round loss yesterday