Green baize stars on cue for charity run

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SNOOKER ace Steve Davis will be joining fellow stars such as Shaun Murphy, Peter Ebdon and Michael Holt to run this year’s Sheffield Half Marathon in aid of the Paul Hunter Foundation.

The charity, which provides free snooker sessions for underprivileged children, was thought up by Leeds-born Hunter shortly before he died from a rare cancer, at the age of just 27.

Six-times world champion Davis said that training for the 13.1 mile road race, which takes place on Sunday, May 27, has made him fitter “mentally and physically.”

He added: “Next season is going to be very tough. There’s a lot of travelling involved and sometimes we play three or four matches in a day. So the fitness will definitely help.

“I’m going to keep the running going after the half marathon and maybe aim to run it every year.”

He added: “The training has been gruelling. Going the distance at the World Championship leaves you mentally tired and there were times when I lost half a stone over the 17 days.

“But that’s nothing to compare to the physical tiredness I have felt after running – it’s genuine exhaustion.

“When you are running uphill your body is telling you to give up and your legs are going, and you have to overrule it with strength of mind.

“There will be a lot of people dressed as bananas or pantomime characters running past me. I could finish last!”

Davis will also be competing in the World Championship snooker qualifiers at the English Institute of Sport in Sheffield this week.

Meanwhile, places are still available for those who wish to take on the snooker players in this year’s Sheffield Half Marathon.

The race follows a route from the Don Valley Stadium through Attercliffe and the city centre to Hunters Bar and back.

For further details, or to enter online, visit www.sheffieldmarathon.com

To sponsor Steve Davis’s half marathon attempt, visit www.justgiving.com/stevesnooker