Missed flights fail to halt Sheffield star Duffy's progress at Northern Ireland Open

TWO MISSED flights, one immense gridlock and one battling victory '“ it's fair to say Adam Duffy will have few stranger days than this Dafabet Northern Ireland Open experience.

Adam Duffy.

Just a few hours before taking to the table, the Sheffield cueman had given up all hope of being able to make it to Belfast when still the other side of the Irish sea.But, having taken an 11th-hour flight and gone on to beat Rory McLeod 4-2 at Waterfront Hall, it’s fair to say it was a decision very much worth the effort.And as if that wasn’t enough, Duffy was back in the air before the night was even up, popping home prior to his second-round return on Wednesday.“I’ve missed two flights today – I wasn’t even going to come,” he joked.“I set off at 5.30am but there was a massive crash on the road so I had to go to some services to figure out what to do.“Then we booked another one but couldn’t get there because of the gridlock – so I was halfway home and had given up.“But then we sorted another one, got here and won the match 4-2 – I might do the same tomorrow!“But I do have to go home and sort a few things out – if the game had gone to 3-3 I was panicking about missing a third in the same day.”When attentions turned to on the table, Duffy was embroiled in a tense encounter with McLeod, neither player making a break greater than 50 in the entire match.But it mattered little for the Yorkshireman, taking his place in the second round where a clash with Anthony McGill awaits.And after the disruption of the early stages of his day, it was little wonder he made the most of enjoying the snooker when he finally got there.“I actually enjoyed the game, I don’t usually concentrate that much but I’ve been trying harder to do that, working more on the tactical part of the game,” he added.“For the past year I’ve been trying to focus on the tactics, I wasn’t happy with my game and I changed up a few things back home and hopefully it will pay off.”Meanwhile there were contrasting Belfast fortunes for the Lines family, with son Oliver progressing while father Peter played his last shot of the tournament.Oliver had to do it the hard way, edging out a 4-3 decider against Xu Si, while 1997 world champion Ken Doherty got the better of Peter, 4-2.York’s Ashley Hugill is through however, beating Josh Boileau with one break of 50 in the match, with either defending champion Mark King or Matthew Bolton next in his sights.It wasn't to be for Sanderson Lam however, unable to get the better of home favourite Mark Allen, going down 4-2 in a late-night finish.

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