St Leonards star edged out in epic English Open final

Mark Davis was narrowly beaten 9-7 by Stuart Bingham in an epic English Open final
Mark Davis was narrowly beaten 9-7 by Stuart Bingham in an epic English Open final

Snooker ace Mark Davis came up narrowly short in his quest for a maiden full ranking event title.

The St Leonards-based potter was edged out 9-7 by Stuart Bingham in an epic English Open final at K2 Crawley on Sunday.

There was never more than one frame between the two players until the very end of a high quality contest featuring 11 breaks of more than 50, including two centuries.

See also: * Brilliant Davis stuns O’Sullivan to reach English Open final
* St Leonards ace into English Open semi-finals
* St Leonards star beats four-time world champ in English Open
* Davis targets first ever ranking title on Sussex soil

The opening four frames during the afternoon session were shared, with world number 45 Davis winning the first (despite a Bingham 51) and fourth, and 15th-ranked Bingham taking the second (with a break of 75) and third.

The two men traded the next four frames to end the session level at 4-4. Bingham went 3-2 and 4-3 up, aided by a 77 in frame seven, only for Davis to respond with runs of 72 in frame six and a magnificent 136 in frame eight.

The evening session was also nip and tuck. Davis began it with a break of 94 to lead 5-4 only for Bingham to pocket the next two frames with runs of 78 and 73. Davis took frame 12 to level at 6-6 at the interval and a break of 65 in the next gave him the lead.

Davis didn’t score a point in the next two frames, though, as Bingham produced runs of 82 and 102 to lead 8-7. And the former world champion secured his fifth ranking title by winning frame 16 59-20.

The 46-year-old Davis can nevertheless reflect on a superb week in which he won six matches en route to the final, including a 6-1 semi-final victory over five-time world champion Ronnie O’Sullivan and 4-2 fourth round win against four-time world champion John Higgins.