Andy
Andy
7
v
1
Odrl
Odrl
Andy : 102, 105, 109

Frame 1: A very long safety battle at the start of the match, just over an hour before Andy potted the first ball. He then broke down fairly quickly, missing a straight black, and I did enough to take the frame.

Frame 2: No safety battle this time, as I left a long red on my first shot. Andy did not take advantage immediately though. I had a great scoring chance, but finished on nothing when splitting the pack from the pink. A failed plant attempt let Andy in, but he played a very poor shot to lose position. I then went for a tricky red to the middle and underhit it, before Andy finally won the frame with a clearance of 102.

Frame 3: More safety played this time, until Andy left a 4-ball plant in the pack. I potted it, but struggled to get ideal position. I eventually played a tricky black, and looked to have a guaranteed split, but somehow finished on nothing. There was no safety either. Andy took advantage in one visit, with a couple of great recovery shots in the process.

Frame 4: Time for one more frame became available. Odrl won the first safety battle with a good snooker behind the yellow. Andy tried to hit a dumped red safe but only made it easier to pot. Odrl duly potted it. He then took on the blue and screwed back into the back but was unfortunate to not leave himself with a pottable red. A long safety battle then followed, with tense shots off the cushion to avoid leaving anything on. After getting the white in amongst the pack and cutting off the angle to the side cushion, Andy left Odrl with limited options. He played to the cushion, leaving only a risky plant. Andy took it on and the red just made it in. Andy followed with a nice century with no real errors until the final yellow.

Frame 5: Andy made a safety mistake, leaving a free ball. I managed to score 50 points, before having to play a tricky split. I got it perfectly, but only had a very difficult pot on. I missed it, allowing Andy to get back into the frame. He failed to get position on the final green and then followed it with a poor safety as well. I did not take advantage however, as I tried to power the green in the middle pocket and missed it.

Frame 6: A similar story. Andy played a careless safety, leaving a pot at the edge of the pack. I got it, then missed the black trying to split the reds. I split them well, but the white finished near the yellow, only leaving Andy a very difficult pot along the side cushion. He got it and did enough to win the frame in one visit.

Frame 7: The only frame where I did not have a scoring chance! This time it was me who left the free ball. Andy first made a 60 before running out of position. He played a nasty snooker behind the brown, guaranteeing himself another chance. He once again lost position and then played the best shot of the match, an incredible pot to the middle at a very awkward angle, which ultimately won him the frame.

Frame 8: I once again prevailed in the safety exchange, or I suppose you could say I got myself a scoring chance with a good pot. I decided to relax a bit and just let things happen, but this was not a good strategy as I immediately missed a sitter. Andy then cleared to the black with a 109, his third century of the match.

Final thoughts: The scoreline is disappointing, but I am actually not that unhappy with my play here. I think I had four unlucky splits and could have been ahead for most of the match, but it was not to be. Andy was not at his best, but he got a couple of tremendous recovery pots when he lost position, and this ultimately made the difference. Good luck in the final, not that you need it... :)

I have now had enough of this 7-1 business, so expect a defeat next time, sir! ;)