Snooker: Improving Joel ready for Li showdown

Joel Walker can't wait for the Bluebell Wood Open.
Joel Walker can't wait for the Bluebell Wood Open.

Joel Walker is refusing to underestimate the threat Li Hang will pose in their first round clash in the Bluebell Wood Open this week.

Buoyed by qualifying for the Indian Open, the Sheffield potter is looking forward to taking on Hang in the Open, a European Tour event, at the Doncaster Dome this Thursday. Their clash gets underway at 11am and fellow Sheffielder Adam Duffy locks horns with Ryan Day later that day in the tournament.

Walker, who practices at Hustlers Sports Bar, in Eckington, told The Star: “I played Li three years ago when we were amateurs in Q School. I won 4-3 but a lot has changed since then. We are both professionals now and this is his first year on the tour. He’s had a couple of good results this year; he beat Judd Trump in the Wuxi Classic in China so he’s a good player.”

Walker, aged 19, sealed his place in the Indian Open in Delhi, which runs from October 14-18, after coming from two frames down to beat Tian Pengfei 4-2 last weekend. Duffy was comfortably beaten by Thailand’s Noppon Saengkham.