Snooker: Free role for Reynolds

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The Independent Online
DEAN REYNOLDS was pleased just to be able to play Joe Johnson at the Embassy World Championship qualifying competition in Telford yesterday.

The Grimsby left-hander was a free man to compete in the game's blue riband event only after receiving special dispensation from prison authorities. Reynolds, released from Morton Hall open prison two weeks ago after serving a jail term for drink-driving, was forced to play with an electronic tag around his ankle. However, the 7pm house curfew imposed when Reynolds was released early from prison has been waived while he plays in the pounds 1.4m tournament.

Reynold looked determined to make the most of his time out of the house when his marathon match against Johnson was suspended to allow the next session of matches to begin on time. It meant that Reynolds, leading 9- 5, still required one more frame to set up a meeting with Jimmy White today when a place in the championship proper at the Crucible will be at stake.

Meanwhile, Gloucester's Nick Pearce will face Darren Morgan for a trip to Sheffield today, following a remarkable 10-7 victory over Gary Ponting.

Pearce, a former male model, arrived half an hour late for yesterday's opening session after misreading the start time. As a result, he was docked three frames but rallied to trail only 5-4 overnight and pulled away on the resumption.

John Lardner, of Glasgow, came close to compiling a maximum break in his surprise 10-8 win over Australia's Quinten Hann. Lardner potted 13 reds with blacks but missed a tricky penultimate red, when forced to use the rest on 104.