Kyren Wilson has vowed to come back stronger next season after he suffered his second consecutive Betfred World Championship quarter-final defeat, going down 13-6 to John Higgins.
The Kettering potter was level at 3-3 in the first session, but his cue tip split and from there he struggled to contain four-time champion Higgins – who ran away with the match.
Wilson fell at the same stage to Mark Selby a year ago, and admits it felt a lot like groundhog day against Higgins.
But he promised he has learned a lot from this latest setback.
“I am so annoyed with myself, so frustrated,” he said.
“It is another learning curve for me, I am very young and I have learnt a lot from this one – probably more than last year’s tournament.
“So I need to get better prepared for next year.
“I am not here to make the quarter-finals, I am here to win the tournaments.
“Until I do that I will never be happy.
“I have been in and out of form this season.
“I have had a couple of runs and a couple of good wins but if I want to win and be a top-16 player than I have got to improve – and I certainly will for next season.
“I was punished by a very good champion.”
Wilson was all-but beaten before he arrived at the Crucible on Wednesday morning, after a disastrous second session saw him fall 11-5 behind in the best-of-25 match.
And any hope he had of a remarkable comeback was quickly extinguished by Higgins – who made an impressive break of 61 in the opener.
Wilson did win one frame, but the result was inevitable and Higgins clinched the match in frame 19 – leaving a frustrated Wilson ruing his luck.
“I could not understand why the second tip was in my case and it was so perfect on my cue but as soon as I got out into the Crucible I understood why it was in my case, it was just a terrible tip,” he said.
“This is something I have got to learn from and be better prepared for in case a freak accident happens again.
“It is a completely different sound.
“The tip I had on before was more or less fine and it made a rock-hard sound.
“I like a hard tip but this was like a fruit pastille – playing with side spin was very difficult.”
Watch the Snooker World Championship Live on Eurosport and Eurosport Player, with Colin Murray and analysis from Jimmy White and Neal Foulds