Wattana Wins In Hong Kong

Wattana Wins In Hong Kong

Thailand's James Wattana today beat Ken Doherty 6-4 to take the Euro-Asia Snooker Masters Challenge title in Hong Kong.

It was Doherty who looked the more assured early on, the Dubliner making breaks of 65 and 31 to keep the match level at two-apiece, before knocks of 61 and 62 gave him a 4-3 lead.

However Wattana responded superbly, and reeled off the next three frames with contributions of 61, 75 and 38 to secure victory and the title.

"I didn't expect that I could reach the final, admitted Wattana. "I played pretty consistently throughout the competition, so there was actually no turning-point-frame for me.

"I have beat three top-ranked European players in this tournament and I think I played particularly well against Stephen Hendry yesterday and Ken Doherty today, so I am very pleased. I am hoping to get back into the top 16 or even the top 10, so this is a good warm-up for me."

Looking ahead to the second leg of the Euro-Asia Snooker Masters Challenge in Bangkok later this week, Wattana tried to calm expectations saying, "I feel a little bit of pressure playing in front of a home crowd because Thai people always have huge expectations and I haven't played at home in a while."

Doherty meanwhile admitted that there was little he could do to stop Wattana winning.

"When I went 4-3 up I had a chance, but James just played the better snooker after that."