Neil Robertson returns to form to progress in Betway UK Championship
By Ross Lawson
Neil Robertson took his foot off the gas in his last outing but there was no risk of a repeat in a triumphant start to the Betway UK Championship.
The Australian suffered back-to-back defeats to Ben Woollaston in the space of a week earlier this month, admitting that he needed to ease off having reached the final of his previous two tournaments.
But he was back on form in the opening match of his latest Triple Crown event, overcoming French amateur Brian Ochoiski to reach the second round in Milton Keynes.
“You can't allow yourself to fall into these lulls, people out there are ready to pick up the pieces,” said Robertson.
“After the loss early last week, I've been practicing really well over the past few days and I'd love to go deep in this tournament and win it for a third time.
“The set-up feels a lot better, you've got the big portraits of the players, you've got the lights, the set is all there and it feels really important.
“That's good for the top players, you want to be feeling part of a really big event.
“I got what I deserved at those last two tournaments, I hadn't really picked up the cue but I felt I needed a few days to refresh and get ready for this one.
“I've been practicing really well over the past four or five days, I always felt really good about my chances today."
Ochoiski was never likely to threaten Robertson but a 6-0 win certainly gave the Cambridge-based cueman plenty of confidence for the latter stages.
Chris Wakelin is next up for the fourth seed, who is acutely aware there is a long way to go until he can think about success in this prestigious events.
But with two UK titles already under his belt from 2013 and 2015, Robertson is certainly not lacking in confidence from a tournament he holds in high esteem.
He added: "My first victory here completed the Triple Crown and that was really important for me.
“The second time, I made a 147 in the final and it was the first time two overseas players were playing in the same final, so that was special.
“To win the UK Championship twice is fantastic but I'd love to go out there and do it again.”
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