Estonian snooker player Andres Petrov has recorded the most important win of his career so far. The 27-year-old "Tallinn Lamborghini" defeated world number four Mark Allen 4-3 in the opening round of the Northern Ireland Open in Belfast on Monday night.
Petrov, who is currently ranked 96th in the world, raced into a 3 frames to 1 lead late on Monday, leaving Allen needing to win the final three frames to reach the next round.
However, the Northern Irishman, who was playing in front of a home crowd, did not give up easily and clawed his way back into the contest, leveling the match at 3 frames apiece.
Then, in the decisive frame seven, Allen made a crucial mistake on the blue with the score at 56-48 in his favor. Petrov gladly accepted the opportunity to record the most impressive win of his career so far. The 27-year-old Estonian held his nerve to prevail 66-56 and take the match by 4 frames to 3.
"This is the best win of my career so far. I was very lucky at the end. When I was at the final black ball, I thought: this one is for my daughter and I'm going to pot it," said the Estonian, who is known on the circuit as "The Tallinn Lamborghini."
"I hope my wife was sleeping and not watching in Estonia because she has to get up early," he said.
"I'm so happy that I made it. I can't describe what it means to me. I knew I was playing a local favorite, but I also knew that there was a group of people in Estonia who were watching and rooting for me. That helped."
I. Cannot. Believe. It.— Andres Petrov (@SnookerForce) October 24, 2023
"Not to be tonight. Gave it absolutely everything but came up just short. Thanks to everyone for their support as always here in Belfast. It doesn't go unnoticed and you deserved better. Back to the practice table for me," Mark Allen wrote on social media.
Allen, 37, has won nine ranking tournaments and reached the semi-finals of the World Championship for the second time in his career this spring. Last fall, Allen also won the U.K. Championship.
Petrov, who prior to defeating Allen, beat Sanderson Lam 4-3 in the tournament's qualifying round, will now face China's Xing Zihao in round two. The 18 year-old, who is ranked number 97 in the world, knocked out former world champion Graham Dott of Scotland (world number 41) in the opening round.
Editor: Michael Cole