Amateur Joe Swail fights back to beat Stephen Maguire in Galway
Joe Swail has made a stunning return to the big stage by coming from 3-0 down to beat Stephen Maguire 4-3 in the Players Tour Championship Grand Finals.
The two-time Crucible semi-finalist from Belfast is competing as an amateur after dropping out of the main tour at the end of last season.
“I've practised a lot over the last few days and this is the result”
Swail's victory takes him through to the last 16 in Galway and a clash with fellow NI player Mark Allen.
"If you look at my track record you know that I don't give in," said Swail.
Scotland's Maguire looked to be cruising as breaks of 89, 56 and 52 put him 3-0 up.
But Swail nicked the fourth by clearing from yellow to pink, and when Maguire missed a black off the last red in the fifth frame with victory within his grasp, the momentum was with Swail.
The Ulsterman clinched that frame on the colours then a run of 69 got him back to 3-3. Swail missed a red on 23 in the decider, only for Maguire to fail on a red to the same centre pocket.
A further 42 from Swail left his opponent needing snookers and when he potted the last red he was through to the last 16 to face Allen, who beat Mark Davis 4-0 later in the evening.
"I haven't had much to shout about over the last few years, it has been tough," added the 43-year-old.
"I knew things would turn around on and off the table. I knew sooner or later it would come, but what a way for it to come here, beating one of the top players from 3-0 down. I'm absolutely over the moon.
"No matter how bad things are I always stick at it. I've practised a lot over the last few days and this is the result."
Neil Robertson survived a tough test against Jamie Burnett, coming from 2-0 down to win 4-2 and set up a match with Barry Hawkins .