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Last Updated: Monday, 30 April 2007, 14:39 GMT 15:39 UK
In-form Carter ends Hendry hopes
Stephen Hendry
I'm obviously lacking in confidence - I haven't won a tournament in three years

Stephen Hendry
Ali Carter ended Stephen Hendry's dreams of an eighth world title as he sealed a deserved 13-6 win to reach the quarter-finals at The Crucible.

Hendry had put himself in an impossible position, going into the final session 12-4 behind and needing to launch an unprecedented fightback.

The Scot, who switched to a new cue just before the tournament, showed commendable attitude to close to 12-6.

But Carter clinched the inevitable win with runs of 35 and 20 in the last.

Hendry made breaks of 39 and 47 to take the first two frames of the session, but he was only playing for pride.

The damage was done in the first two sessions, with Carter winning both by 6-2 margins against a misfiring Hendry.

606: DEBATE

The 38-year-old looked out-of-sorts throughout as he gifted a series of chances which Carter punished clinically.

But a philosophical Hendry refused to blame the heavy defeat on his decision to change cues just three weeks before the start of the tournament.

"I've played like that with the other cue as well," he said.

"It was the story of my season really.

"I can't reproduce my practice form in matches for some reason. I don't cue with the same freedom and therefore I don't play my natural game - it's like giving everyone a 50-point start.

Ali Carter
People might talk about Stephen's cue but I put him under pressure

Ali Carter

"I'm obviously lacking in confidence. I haven't won a tournament in three years - it plays a huge part in any sport, no matter how many titles you've won or how good you are.

"I don't want to take anything away from Ali because I thought his performance was fantastic. His safety play was some of the best that's ever been played against me.

"I don't think I've ever been snookered so much in my life."

Meanwhile, Carter said he was delighted with his display.

"I was really pleased with my performance," Carter told BBC Sport.

"People might talk about Stephen's cue but I put him under pressure. It's hard for anyone to play when you're under pressure."

The world number 15, who is in the process of obtaining his pilot's licence, said he had needed to keep his focus despite his enormous lead.

"Everyone was texting me saying 'well done' but I was well aware that stranger things have happened - people can make comebacks," he said.

"But I was confident in my form and just wanted to get out there."


Stephen Hendry (Sco) 6-13 Ali Carter (Eng)
34-69 (68) 92-0 (92) 98-0 0-78 (78) 0-72 (72) 52-72 (72) 39-61 3-136 (111) 1-59 69-41 0-66 (66) 0-136 (53, 83) 71-31 (57) 0-61 0-74 12-116 (83) 78-1 65-32 7-63



SEE ALSO
Carter sets up Hendry encounter
26 Apr 07 |  Snooker
Hendry struggles to beat Gilbert
25 Apr 07 |  Snooker
Hendry wants 'greatest ever' win
23 Apr 07 |  Snooker


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