Robert Milkins deserves huge credit for overturning a 4-0 deficit to beat Michael Holt 5-4 in Bahrain yesterday.

This is unusual, though not unheard of.

I have huge sympathy for Holt, who seemed to be in the best form of his career. As I’d expect, he took it all with great self-deprecation, saying: “I wish there was a video of that match so we could give it to people who were feeling down on themselves. After watching it they’d be outside doing cartwheels and saying ‘at least I'm not Michael Holt.’”

At least he’s in good company. Even the greats of the game have lost matches from a long way in front.

Steve Davis led Alex Higgins 7-0 in the 1983 UK Championship final and was beaten 16-15; he led Dennis Taylor 8-0 in the 1985 World Championship final and lost 18-17; he led Ryan Day 4-0 in the first round of the 2000 Welsh Open and lost 5-4.

Ronnie O’Sullivan was 8-2 up on Peter Ebdon in the quarter-finals of the 2005 World Championship but was beaten 13-11.

Stephen Hendry led Mark Williams 8-4 in the quarter-finals of the 2001 UK Championship but lost 9-8.


Anonymous said...

In the 2001 UK when Hendry led 8-4 and lost 9-8 to Williams, I seem to recall that the other match went exactly the same - 8-4 up at the interval resulting in a 9-8 loss.

(But I forget who the players were!)


RichP said...

Surely the comeback that sticks in everyone's memory is the Stephen Hendry one against Mike Hallett. Hallet leading 7-0 and 8-2 but losing 9-8 and then finding his house had been burgled the same night. Not sure if that was the downturn in Hallett's career but it would have taken a lot to come back after that.

RichP said...

Mean't to say that was obviously in the Masters Final in 1991 (I think)

Anonymous said...

It was O'Sullivan beating Ebdon from 8-4 down - I remember that well there seemed a certain inevitability about both comebacks at the time.

for the record Ronnie bt Williams in the semi and Doherty in the final

Sammy said...

I cried when Holt lost.

So gutted.

andy said...

Yeah Dave, I'm suprised you forgot the Hendry-Hallet Masters final. :o)

Anonymous said...

I remember very well the night O'Sullivan and Williams both turned round 8-4 defecits. I had the next day booked off work to go and watch the action live in York hoping for my two favourite players. I went out the night before for a few ales and left the house with both at 8-4 down feeling thoroughly fed up. When I got home I double checked the scores on teletext thinking the worst and couldn't believe my eyes that both had won 9-8. It took me about 10 minutes before I stopped running around the room punching the air!