Trusting the process
After a confidence-boosting win against Barry Hawkins at the China Open Qualifiers in January, I was really hoping to kick on and get some results in the last few events of this season. Despite what I thought was a pretty good performance against Jimmy Robertson at the Welsh Open, I had to taste yet another bruising 4-3 defeat after leading 3-1. Jimmy played very well from 3-1 and I didn’t really do much wrong but I suppose I did have a few half chances that didn’t work out and it cost me in the end. Regardless, I left that match feeling very positive about how my game is evolving over the last few months.
The positivity comes from the belief that despite all the challenges I have faced this season, I have undoubtedly made progress. Winning is not the only marker to measure success. I read a post on social media recently that said, ‘There are a few things in life we have control over- our effort, attitude, faith and happiness’. It hit the spot in my mind because I realized that I was getting too worked up about the things that I have no control over. So I have been trying to simplify my thought process and just do the small things right and have the faith that my efforts will not go in vain.
The training at the Whetstone Snooker Club in North London is going well and its great to see my practice partner Anthony Hamilton having an outstanding season and winning his first ever Ranking title at the German Masters after 26 years as pro. And to think that he was one match away from dropping off the tour last season just shows the power of perseverance. We are all very proud of his achievements and I have had the privilege of learning from him for the last few months. His knowledge and experience has been a huge help in guiding me on my way back to form and I hope his success rubs off on the rest of us!
This week we travel to Gibraltar for the Gibraltar Open where I will play Nigel Bond in round 1. Our last match was a close one that I won 5-4 and I will be prepared for another tough match. After that event I’m looking forward to my trip back home and spending time with family before setting of to Beijing for the China Open at the end of March.