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Last Updated: Monday, 26 April, 2004, 16:59 GMT 17:59 UK
Hendry wins thriller
By Clive Jones
BBC Sport at The Crucible

Stephen Hendry
Hendry proved too strong in the end
Stephen Hendry claimed his place in the quarter-finals with a 13-12 victory over qualifier Barry Pinches after an epic second round encounter.

The pair were locked together at 8-8 going into the final session before Pinches moved into a 11-9 lead.

Hendry refused to buckle and hauled himself to within a frame of victory only for Pinches to level at 12-12.

But it was Hendry who held his nerve in a tense deciding frame to end the challenge of a gallant opponent.

Stephen Hendry breathed a huge sigh of relief after being pushed to the limit by Barry Pinches in the second round.

"I've had some battles here down the years, but I think this must be the top of the list," said the seven-times champion after his 13-12 victory.

"I tried to put pressure on him but it didn't seem to make any difference and in the end it was the toss of a coin.

"The top players are dropping like flies this year, so I am glad just to be still in the tournament."

Pinches was not downhearted after losing a thrilling tussle.

"Obviously I'm disappointed but I must take the positives out of this," said Pinches.

"This was a good platform for me and is the best match I have played in front of the TV cameras.

"I took my eye off the black in the decider and I could have scored 20 or 30 points from there. But everybody misses those shots now and again."

Second-round result (best of 25 frames):

S Hendry (Sco) 13-12 B Pinches (Eng)

68-55 (55 Pinches) 70-15 53-62 (61) 55-61 0-73 (69) 68-40 84-16 (62) 60-51, 35-59, 68-28 (67), 81-39, 58-79 (59), 44-57, 0-80 (80), 0-97 (97), 62-61 (62, 61) 92-27 (59) 36-66 0-129 (122) 33-62 (57) 95-0 (95) 75-48 84-0 (84) 15-66 65-9

Stephen Hendry
"I'm still in it so I can still win it"




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