Davis Set For Snooker Return

Steve Davis will play on British soil for the first time this season tomorrow, when he faces World Champion Mark Selby at the Dafabet Champion of Champions in Coventry.


Six-time Crucible king Davis dropped off the professional tour at the end of last season after 36 years on the circuit. But he had already qualified for the Dafabet Champion of Champions by winning the World Seniors Championship in 2013, so will go head-to-head with Selby on Tuesday at 1pm at the Ricoh Arena.


“I have been practising in the build-up to Coventry and hopefully building up to some sort of functional level,” said 57-year-old Davis. “I won’t expect much though. At least I’ll be fresh, even if I’m rubbish.


“In a way it was a relief for me to drop off the tour and to end that habit all players have of looking at the ranking list and wondering what they have to do. Then Barry Hearn announced he was going to offer invitations to certain events, which meant I’d still be able to play from time to time, which suits me.


“I played in the first couple of European Tour events but didn’t do very well. Now we’re into the winter there is more motivation for me, and I’ll be playing more in the second half of the season, as long as I get invites. 


“It’s a nice feeling, not having a ranking position or standard I’m trying to protect. I can just play for fun and when I feel like it. Of course I will still take pride in my performance and if every now and again I can play well and win a match, it will feel great to be involved in a tournament. But I won’t lose any sleep if I play badly.”


The Dafabet Champion of Champions, televised on ITV4, runs from Monday to Sunday this week, with Ronnie O’Sullivan, Neil Robertson, Ding Junhui and Judd Trump among the other top stars targeting the £100,000 top prize.


Tickets are available from www.Theticketfactory.com or 0844 338 8000.