Kettering’s Kyren determined to enjoy another Crucible experience

Kettering's Kyren Wilson will play Joe Perry in the first round of the Betfred World Snooker Championship at the Crucible next week

Kettering's Kyren Wilson will play Joe Perry in the first round of the Betfred World Snooker Championship at the Crucible next week

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Kyren Wilson is ready to enjoy another appearance at the Crucible after he secured his place in the Betfred World Snooker Championship.

The Kettering star has enjoyed a stunning year with the undoubted highlight being him clinching his first-ever ranking title when he won the Shanghai Masters in September.

Wilson has shot up to number 19 in the world, although that did mean he had to go through the qualifying stages to secure his place in the biggest competition of the season.

He saw off Jamie Weston 10-3 in his first-round match at Ponds Forge International Sports Centre in Sheffield and then beat Martin O’Donnell 10-6.

That set up a showdown with Matthew Stevens for one of the 16 qualifying places and Wilson prevailed, again by a 10-6 scoreline.

The 24-year-old will face world number 10 Joe Perry in the first round at the Crucible with the match starting next Wednesday night and then being played to a finish 24 hours later.

And with a big summer to look forward to in which he will marry his partner Sophie, the Kettering player is feeling in a relaxed mood after gaining his spot in Sheffield.

“It was disappointing not to push into the top 16 towards the end of the season,” Wilson said.

“I knew what I had to do but it didn’t quite happen.

“But I knew I had the game and confidence to go into the qualifiers and make it through.

“It’s never easy and there is so much tension because everyone is so desperate to get there.

“And to play against someone like Matthew Stevens to earn your place is no mean feat.

“But I have made it and I am delighted. The worlds is the one that everyone is watching.

“To play at the Crucible is the pinnacle of everyone’s career and some players don’t even get the opportunity.

“Just to qualify is an achievement in itself and I can’t wait for it now.

“I can go back to Sheffield and enjoy it and then look forward to a good break afterwards as I have my stag night and wedding coming up!”