Stephen Hendry: Up for the big stage

Following on from my post yesterday, Stephen Hendry has now offered his thoughts on his upcoming UK Championship clash with Jimmy White over at In fact, 110sport have put together an interesting UK Championship preview section on their website in which they have interviewed their players who are involved ahead of the tournament which you can find here.

Click below to continue reading the article on Stephen however…

DESPITE admitting he struggles to motivate himself for some of snooker’s smaller events it is very clear playing on the big stage still excites Stephen Hendry.

The five-times UK Champion will begin his quest for more success with a mouth-watering clash with Jimmy White and is hoping the match can live up to expectations.

“It will be nice to play Jimmy; he obviously is playing well as Joe Perry is a very tough opponent. I am sure the crowd will be good for the match and hopefully those watching on television will enjoy it too,” Hendry told

“It feels like a while since the World Open in Glasgow so it’s good to be back and playing in a major event at an established venue.

“There have been plenty of opportunities to play in events since Glasgow with the PTC and EPTC tournaments so there certainly isn’t a player who can say they have not got chances to play competitive snooker.

“A lot of players have embraced the PTC and EPTC events and have been rewarded in the rankings. There have been enough points available to help the consistent players at the top end of the rankings push away a bit.

“I chose not to play in quite a few of the events and the ones I did I didn’t do well enough in. I went up one place after the World Open but have fallen since.”

Hendry holds many fond memories of the UK Championship. He won his first UK title in 1989 with a 16-12 victory over Steve Davis and went on to win the tournament a further four times.

Therefore it is hardly a surprise that he struggles to identify a single highlight that the tournament has provided him with.

“My finals played over two days against Steve Davis stick in my mind, especially the match in 1990 where I won 16-15.

“However in terms of performance my final against Ken Doherty in 1995 was one of the best of my career. I made seven centuries in that match and I am not sure if I have ever played as well as I did on that day.

“The only downside was that I lost five frames, but I was able to get over that quite quickly,” he laughed.

Few will also forget Hendry’s infamous UK quarter-final encounter with Ronnie O’Sullivan in 2006 – a match that O’Sullivan conceded at 4-1 down.

Hendry went on to win his semi-final against Graeme Dott but lost out in the final to Peter Ebdon.

“I don’t think Ronnie conceding caused me any problems – I was delighted to be honest,” he admitted.

“It would be easy to lie and of course I would have got great satisfaction from beating a player like Ronnie to reach the semi-finals however I wasn’t complaining when the match ended at 4-1. It meant I was able to have a little extra time to prepare for my next match.”