Scotland’s Marc Davis looks set to feature prominently on this season’s World Snooker Tour after reaching the final stage of 2016 Q School event one.
The 28-year-old fell at the final hurdle, losing to Chris Keogan, but was encouraged by his showing when we caught up with him…
Marc, were you pleased with the way you played at Q School despite not winning your final match?
“I let myself down the last couple of times, so I was pleased with how well I played. I don’t always practise a lot – as I have a full time job with Ladbrokes – but I decided to give this a real go. I put in seven hours a day for 12 days prior to the event, and it really paid off.
“I don’t think it helped that I had to sleep knowing I was just one win from achieving my card. It dawned on me what I was about to do and I didn’t play my best. I also came up against a really good player in Chris. He practises harder than most of the players I have seen, so he deserved it.”
In terms of the season ahead, what’s your main targets and ambitions?
“By getting to the final stage of Q School I should be in line to play in a lot of events, so I want to go to as many as I can. Work commitments and finances can make it hard for me to get to tournaments, but I’m really keen to try to get match sharp. I feel I haven’t reached anywhere near my full potential in a tournament situation yet. If I do I think I have a great chance of achieving a full tour card. I’m not sure setting targets is the best mentality. You just have to try to go deep in as many tournaments as possible.”
What’s the highlight of your career so far?
“Playing against players like Shaun Murphy and Judd Trump has been amazing. Especially considering I spend a lot of my time working in the bookies rather than on the practice table! Having said that, if you don’t get the victory it doesn’t mean a lot. I played really well against Shaun and had a good chance to win but didn’t quite manage it.
“Another thing, which gives me great pride, is being one of the few players from Aberdeen to have played in a ranking event. I grew up watching tournaments at venues like the Guild Hall in Preston, so I really enjoyed playing there the other day. Even if the result didn’t go my way.”
Coming from Aberdeen one of the key sporting figures from the area is former Open Champion Golfer Paul Lawrie. Can you tell us a bit about the work you have done with him?
“He supports local sport incredibly well. He sponsored me for a couple of seasons and he also backs a lot of local golfers in the area. Without him I wouldn’t have been able to play as much as I have. I’ve spoken to him a few times about the mentality that goes into being a professional sportsman. The biggest thing that rubbed off on me was his attitude to practice. He always said that it was as serious as when you were out on the tournament stage.”
How are you involved in helping to develop emerging snooker talent in Aberdeen?
“We have snooker and pool sessions for anyone under the age of 18 every Saturday at my local club. I try to be on hand as much as possible to pass on advice and give some tips. Two of the guys are actually going on to represent Scotland this month at the World Eightball Pool Championships.
“I feel that although the snooker scene is very strong in Aberdeen, we don’t produce enough players. I try to encourage the young guys to play as much snooker as possible because it is such a tough game and requires a lot of practise and effort.”