Hicks makes Wattana suffer

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Andy Hicks left James Wattana bewildered for the second time in three months to reach the quarter-finals of the Benson and Hedges Masters at Wembley yesterday.

The 22-year-old from Tavistock pulled three frames out of the fire on his way to a 6-4 victory. It all brought back painful memories for Wattana, as in November Hicks came back from a 56-0 deficit to take the deciding frame of a UK Championship match on the black.

Although this latest meeting might not have gone to the wire, it was a similarly frustrating experience for Wattana.

Hicks went into a 3-1 lead, but Wattana, the world No 5, then rolled off three frames to take a 4-3 lead, before Hicks drew level and took the last two frames, when both appeared out of his grasp, for victory.

Like Wattana, Ronnie O'Sullivan overturned a deficit, but he completed the job. The defending champion reeled off four frames in only 27 minutes from 4-1 down to beat Nigel Bond 6-5.