Jimmy White has been seeing a sports psychologist this season in a bid to climb back up the rankings.
Crowd favourite White will be playing in the Coral Shoot Out at the Watford Colosseum next week, alongside top stars such as Shaun Murphy, Mark Williams and defending champion Anthony McGill.
Londoner White won ten ranking titles and reached the World Championship final six times during his hey-day. Now aged 55, he was relegated from the professional circuit last season, but returned via an invitation tour card awarded due to his legendary status.
And White has justified his place this season with improved form, notably knocking Ali Carter out of the UK Championship and Anthony McGill out of the German Masters.
“I’ve been working with a sports psychologist around twice a month to get me ready for tournaments,” revealed White. “I have done it all before, but even after playing snooker for over 40 years there are still new things I can learn. When you get to my age, the hardest thing is focus. Sometimes when I am playing I lose focus, and it’s hard to get it back. That didn’t happen when I was younger.
“I scored those two good wins over Carter and McGill but then I found it hard to relax before the second round. I spoke to Steve Davis and he gave me some great advice, he said when you get a win you have to forget about it and completely focus on the next match as if nothing has happened. I feel I am going from strength to strength and I am really enjoying snooker at the moment.”
Looking ahead to the Shoot Out, White added: “It is good fun and good for the crowd. The naturally fast players don’t really have an advantage. The tactics are more important, it’s about getting in first, getting a lead and then defending it as the clock runs down.”
The tournament runs from February 8 to 11 with 128 players chasing the £32,000 top prize. Other cue kings in the field include Barry Hawkins, Mark Allen, Luca Brecel, Kyren Wilson, Ali Carter and Ken Doherty.
It’s one of snooker’s most exciting events of the season with all matches lasting a maximum of ten minutes and non-stop drama guaranteed.
Tickets start at just £13.50 thanks to the current special winter offer – fantastic value for the chance to see snooker kings put to the test. There’s also a special student offer of £5 tickets on Thursday February 8th – use the code SNOOKER5 when booking (student ID needed).
For all ticket details CLICK HERE