Snooker: Dechawat Poomjaeng has it all to do against Michael White

 

The Crucible

On a night of comedy and high farce at the Crucible, the joke was on Dechawat Poomjaeng.

The 34-year-old Thai played the jester, just as he had in beating world No 5 Stephen Maguire, but wound up trailing 7-1 in his second-round match against Wales' Michael White at the World Championship.

He entered the arena with both arms raised in triumph, jumped from the second step on to the stage floor and punched the air as though he had won the world title.

Spotting Thailand's national flag in the second row, he held out his arms in adoration, hugged MC Rob Walker passionately and walked to the correct seat this time, having gone to the wrong side of the arena at the start of his match against Maguire.

You had to wonder what Maguire made of it all, as Poomjaeng looked every inch the world number 70 he is thereafter, albeit a world number 70 with a sideline in divisive physical comedy.

It was rather like Comic Relief, with Poomjaeng providing the laughs and White the serious, meaningful fare that brings in the money.

Qualifier White, a 21-year-old Welshman, looked like a serious player with a big future as he let none of the japery affect him, unlike referee Michaela Tabb who towards the end of the match forgot to put the blue on the table for the break-off shot and then, mid-frame, picked up the white ball for no apparent reason.

She was embarrassed and saw the funny side but clearly the frippery was causing the experienced Scot's mind to wander.

Where White was amassing his lead, making a 101 break for his first Crucible century in the process, Poomjaeng was fluking a black and punching himself in the head, missing a red and letting his head sink to the table in mock mourning for the ball that stayed up.

Incredibly he lost the fourth frame without a ball being potted when after being put in an awkward position he failed three times to hit a red, conceding three fouls. Under the game's rules, three misses when a red can be hit full ball means the frame is conceded.

It looked as though Tabb encouraged Poomjaeng to calm down as he giddily looked at White before the eighth frame, before she saw the funny side when he pointed out the blue was missing from the table.

But Poomjaeng's hopes of getting anything out of the match were surely affected by his exaggerated antics. The clapping of his own shots, the moment he jumped on the spot after firing in a long red - which he followed by wildly missing the brown - and the constant interaction with the audience, meant his game was suffering.

Evidently he has talent and there were some remarkable shots, but the prospect of him returning to obscurity was looking all too inevitable.

Willie Thorne labelled him "Thailand's Mr Bean" and his co-commentator Steve Davis expressed a touch of sympathy. "He knows he's been struggling out there tonight," said the six-time champion. "He's feeling the heat a bit. We know he can play to a higher standard than this.

"You don't beat Stephen Maguire without being able to play a high standard of snooker."

Yet Poomjaeng now risks losing a three-session match inside two sessions - with 13 frames the target for victory - having needed a third session to win a scheduled two-session match against Maguire.

He might not see the funny side of that.

Voices
On the last day of campaigning before the polling booths open, the SNP leader has written to voters in a final attempt to convince them to vote for independence
scotland decidesIs a huge gamble on oil keeping First Minister up at night?
Arts and Entertainment
Rosalind Buckland, the inspiration for Cider with Rosie died this week
booksBut what is it like to be the person who inspires a classic work of art?
Life and Style
techApple has just launched its latest mobile operating software – so what should you do first?
News
A male driver reverses his Vauxhall Astra from a tow truck
newsThe 'extremely dangerous' attempt to avoid being impounded has been heavily criticised
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Lionel Messi in action for Barcelona
filmSo what makes the little man tick?
Arts and Entertainment
tvReview: An undercooked end (spoiler alert)
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Pharrell dismissed the controversy surrounding
musicThe singer said 'the last thing I want to do is degrade'
Sport
Cesc Fabregas celebrates his first Chelsea goal
footballChelsea vs Schalke match report
Arts and Entertainment
Toby Jones (left) and Mackenzie Crook in BBC4’s new comedy The Detectorists
tvMackenzie Crook's 'Detectorists' makes the hobby look 'dysfunctional', they say
Life and Style
fashion

Olympic diver has made his modelling debut for Adidas

News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Maths Teacher

£110 - £200 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Secondary Maths Teacher for spe...

Maths Teacher

£90 - £160 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Secondary Science Teacher (mater...

Maths Teacher

£110 - £200 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Secondary Maths Teacher for an ...

Maths Teacher

£22000 - £37000 per annum: Randstad Education Leeds: A West Yorkshire School i...

Day In a Page

Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week