Chris in the frame de­spite UK loss Hig­gins wins but teenager Tot­ten im­presses

Wishaw Press - - FRONT PAGE - Ross Thom­son

Chris Tot­ten re­vealed John Hig­gins of­fered him the chance to prac­tice with him - if the Wizard of Wishaw doesn’t reach the lat­ter stages at the UK Cham­pi­onship.

York’s Bar­bican Hall was the set­ting for the Wishaw v New­mains derby at the UK Cham­pi­onship as the young apprentice Tot­ten took on the four time world cham­pion.

Hig­gins was in no mood to give the young­ster a chance tak­ing a 2-0 lead be­fore Tot­ten pulled it back to 2-1

How­ever, Hig­gins scored three breaks over 50 on his way into the sec­ond round with a 6-1 win.

The 18- year- old said: “It was ab­so­lutely bril­liant; I re­ally en­joyed it.

“After the first cou­ple of frames I set­tled down and played a lot bet­ter.

“I had a few of my mates down and my brother and his pals were there as well.

“After the match John said he would get a cou­ple of games with me be­fore the Scot­tish Open but hope­fully that doesn’t hap­pen and he goes on to win the UK ti­tle.

“The match was the most en­joy­able I’ve had this year along with qual­i­fy­ing for the Shang­hai tour­na­ment.”

Tot­ten bagged a two- year pro­fes­sional tour card as a reward for win­ning the 2017 Euro­pean Ama­teur Cham­pi­onship when he de­feated An­dres Petrov 7–3 in the fi­nal.

No- one said the pro­fes­sional ranks were go­ing to be easy but the New­mains cue­man has already chalked up an im­pres­sive win over 2010 world cham­pion Neil Robert­son in Shang­hai.

He is now turn­ing his at­ten­tion to the Scot­tish Open at the Emi­rates Arena in Glas­gow which starts on De­cem­ber 11 where he faces Sam Baird in the first round.

He added: “Ev­ery­one can beat any­one on the tour.

“It’s al­ways a tour­na­ment that I look for­ward to as I’ll have a bit of sup­port there.

“Hope­fully I can win a cou­ple of games and do well.”

Tot­ten also re­ceived the back­ing of three-time UK win­ner Hig­gins.

After the match the 42-year-old said: “It was a big oc­ca­sion for him, but it’ll stand him in good stead.

“He got on the tour this year and he’s got two years to try and ce­ment his place.

“Good luck to him. He had a great win against Neil Robert­son ear­lier in the year so that was in my mind.

“He’s not fright­ened to beat the top play­ers.

“I strug­gled, but a win’s a win at the end of the day.”

New­mains cue­man Chris Tot­ten en­joyed his first UK Cham­pi­onship ex­pe­ri­ence

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