Jack Lisowski makes his Crucible debut today hoping to follow in the footsteps of former flat-mate Judd Trump.
It was Trump who shocked the sport by coming from nowhere to reach the 2011 World Championship final and Lisowski – at 21, two years his junior – now has similar ambitions.
He reached the China Open quarter-finals last month, beating Trump along the way, and saw off James Wattana and Fergal O’Brien in reaching the televised stages of the Crucible.
His reward is an opening match against Barry Hawkins this afternoon, and left-hander Lisowski – who was forced to put his snooker career on hold as he battled cancer as a 16-year-old – is determined to seize his chance.
“It’s made me realise it’s achievable,” Lisowski said. “There was no one else really young doing anything back then. Judd took the game to a new dimension with the way he plays, and that was how I already played. So I knew that if I got it together I could compete for tournaments.”
Lisowski underwent chemotherapy to treat Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
“You’re 16 and you’ve got your whole life in front of you, and when something like that happens it puts everything on pause,” Lisowski said.