Lisowski Through Despite ‘Stupid’ Mistake

Jack Lisowski made an error which he described as “unforgiveable” but he recovered in time to beat Zhao Xintong 5-3 to reach the semi-finals of the matchroom World Grand Prix.

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The incident came in the fourth frame when Lisowski, leading 2-1, was on a break of 25. He potted a red, had the white cleaned, then absent-mindedly forgot that he needed to play a colour next, and instead potted another red. Referee Nigel Leddie called the foul, and Zhao was handed the chance to make a break of 59 which proved enough to take the frame.

The two players laugh about the incident in the fourth frame.

To his credit, Lisowski bounced back to take the three frames he needed after the interval to set up a semi-final with Mark Selby or Hossein Vafaei.

“It was a Jack Lisowski moment – pure stupidity,” smiled the 29-year-old after the match. “It was unforgiveable. I saw the funny side of it and we were both cracking up, but then I was stewing over it during the interval. It was a massive frame, but I’m glad I was able to forget about it and go on to win.”

After sharing the first two frames, Lisowski made a break of 111 to lead 2-1, then that error left them all square at the interval. A run of 109 saw world number 15 Lisowski regain the lead, then China’s Zhao made a 64 in the sixth as he recovered to 3-3.

Frame seven came down to the last two reds and Zhao, leading 60-29, played a poor safety which let Lisowski in for a superb 42 clearance which included several difficult pots. And Lisowski got the better of a fragmented eighth frame to reach the semi-finals of a ranking event for the sixth time in his career. The Gloucestershire cueman has made three finals – most recently at the 2019 Scottish Open – but is still waiting for his first title.

“Zhao is a similar player to me, today’s match was always going to be about who potted more, it wasn’t going to be a tactical battle,” said Lisowski. “I just had a bit more nous on the safety side and picked him off. I made a great clearance at 3-3, that was a big moment under pressure.

“I was really struggling at the start of this season but I turned it around at the UK Championship (reaching the quarter-finals) which got me into the Masters and into this week’s tournament. Now it’s turning into a very good few weeks. I still have a brick wall in front of me if I want to win the tournament but I’ll try to punch my way through it.”

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