Perry feeling in the groove

Tags: Joe Perry, UK Championship

Joe Perry feels he is playing his best snooker 'in a long time' after he edged out Mark Allen 6-4 in a high-class encounter to book his spot in the last-eight of the UK Championship in York. Perry set up a quarter-final with Stephen Maguire by beating Northern Ireland's Allen, a result that leaves Ronnie O'Sullivan and Shaun Murphy as the sole remaining top-16 ranked players in the running for the season's first Triple Crown title.


Perry compiled breaks of 83, 114 and 63 in building a 3-1 lead over world number nine Allen. The Antrim potter responded with some superb scoring of his own, breaks of 135, 134 and 75 bringing the match to 5-4. Perry, who had nailed a break of 87 to lead 5-2, came through a very scrappy tenth frame to get the win and, overall, was delighted with his play. He is looking for more of the same as he bids to reach the one table set-up in York over the weekend. "It was a great game, the best I have played in a long time," said Perry. "I felt comfortable out there and played solid snooker all the way through, until the end when I collapsed like a cheap tent. I was lucky to crawl over the line. It's a big win for me and I've got to try to keep playing to that level."


Perry is 12/1 to win the UK Championship, while last-eight opponent Maguire is 11/1 to land a second career win in the event. Welshman Ryan Day is also into the last-eight in York, a 6-5 win over Li Hang securing his berth and also boosting his chances of a place in next month's Masters in London as he climbed above Liang Wenbo into 15th spot in the race to Alexandra Palace.


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