SNOOKER: Joe Swail sets up potential last 16 clash with Mark Allen

Belfast's Joe Swail
Belfast's Joe Swail

Veteran Belfast player Joe Swail said he sealed his place in the fourth round of the UK Championship with less difficulty than he had anticipated after defeating Michael Holt 6-1.

Swail made a strong start by taking the first frame and moved into a 3-1 lead after losing a close second frame following two half-centruy breaks.

The Northern Ireland man won the next three frames to secure the win in style and now faces the prospect of an all-Ulster clash with Mark Allen in the last 16.

“It was a surprisingly one-sided win tonight,” Swail, 46, told BBC Sport.

“He didn’t seem to be at the races. But fair play to him. He wished me all the best.

“Everything has just come back together for me,” he added. “I am playing with a smile on my face and I don’t really care if I win or lose. I am not putting pressure on myself.

“If I miss so what? I am enjoying it.

“It would be great to for Northern Ireland if I play Mark Allen but he has a tough match against Martin Gould.”

Swail, who is a two-time World Championship semi-finalist, beat Joel Walker and Adam Duffy to set up his clash with Holt.

His best performance in the UK Championship was a run to the quarter-final some 23 years ago.

Swail will set up an intriguing contest with Allen in round four if the Antrim man can beat Londoner Gould in the third round on Tuesday afternoon.