KEN DOHERTY (1.969)
Irish professional snooker player.
Although he is more recognized for being a very tactical player and a great strategist, it's also a great break builder (has treasured more than 320 hundreds throughout his career). This relatively cautious view of the game has been what has earned him the nickname "Crafty Ken." ("Astuto Ken").
Honours: World Champion in 1.997, Welsh Open Champion in 1.993 Y 2.001, Malta Cup Champion in 2.000 Y 2.006, Thailand Masters Champion in 2.001.
In 1.983 played his first national tournament, a U16 ranking tournament. Doherty lost in the final, but came back a month later and won the Irish U16 Championship. He defended and held the title in 1.984. In 1.986 won the Irish U19 Championship and a year later the Irish Amateur Championship.
In 1.989, one year before turning professional, showed his great talent by winning the Irish Amateur Championship for the second time, the U21 World Championship and the Amateur World Championship.
He turned pro in the season 1.990/1.991. After two semi-finals in the season 1.991/1.992 (the second as a professional), Doherty reached the final of the Grand Prix of 1.992, where they lost 10-9 ante Jimmy White. In the same tournament, a year later, lost for 6-9 frente a Peter Ebdon.
His first ranking title was achieved at the Welsh Open in 1.993, when he beat Alan McManus in the final for 9-7. Since that year, and until the season 2.007/2.008, stayed inside the top 16. In the following season he reached the quarterfinals of the World Championship, tras vencer a Alex Higgins (10-6) in the first round and Alan McManus (13-11) in second round. In his quarterfinal match he faced Jimmy White, losing 10-13.
In season 1.996/1.997 Doherty became the third player from outside the UK (after Australian Horace Lindrum in 1.952 and Canadian Cliff Thorburn in 1.980) to win the World Championship. In the first round he beat Mark Davis (10-8), in second to Steve Davis (13-3), in quarters to John Higgins (13-9) and in the semifinals Alain Robidoux (17-7). In the final he faced the six-time world champion (and defender of the title) Stephen Hendry. Although it was not a favorite, and what Hendry did 5 hundreds during the final, Doherty knew how to handle the pressure and beat Hendry by 18-12. In this way he became the only player to have won the U21 World Championship., the Amateur World Championship and the Professional World Championship.
In season 1.997/1.998 reached the final of the World Championship again. Defeated, first round, a Lee Walker (10-8), a Stephen Lee (13-8) in second round, a Matthew Stevens (13-10) in quarters and Mark Williams (17-14) in the semifinals. Played the final against John Higgins, losing 12-18. That same season he won the Malta Grand Prix, defeating John Higgins by 7-5 in the end, and the Premier League, where he beat Jimmy White in the final for 10-2.
In season 1.998/1.999 reached the quarterfinals of the China Open and the World Championship, where they lost 13-9 frente a Mark Williams. He was a finalist in the Masters, losing to John Higgins by 8-10. In the Thailand Masters he reached the quarterfinals, as in the Malta Cup and the Irish Masters; and the Scottish Open, in the German Masters and in the Champions Cup he reached the semifinals. Made it to the final of the Malta Grand Prix, where he lost to Stephen Hendry for 6-7.
In season 1.999/2.000 reached the final of the Masters. He was about to make a maximum break, but the final black missed in the fifteenth frame. Lost the match, and the title, by 10-8 ante Matthew Stevens. Won the Malta Grand Prix, by 9-3 frente a Mark Williams. At the Thailand Masters he reached the semifinals and quarterfinals at the World Open and at the Scottish Masters.
The following season he won the Welsh Open for the second time, beating Paul Hunter by 9-2. He also won the Thailand Masters, defeating by 9-3 Stephen Hendry in the final. Made it to the Scottish Open final, to the semifinals of the Scottish Masters and reached the quarterfinals of the World Championship, the Masters and the World Open.
In season 2.001/2.002, Doherty reached two ranking tournament finals: el UK Championship (losing 1-10 before Ronnie O’Sullivan) and the Welsh Open (losing 7-9 against Paul Hunter). Reach the quarterfinals at the China Open and the World Championships, where he was defeated by Stephen Hendry by 12-13.
He also reached the fourth place at the Thailand Masters and the Scottish Masters.. Reached the semi-finals in the Malta Cup, in the Champions Cup and the Irish Masters. Played in the Nations Cup final 2.001 with Fergal O'Brien and Michael Judge against the Scottish trio Hendry, Higgins y McManus. They lost 2-6.
In season 2.002/2.003 reached the final of the UK Championship again. He lost it to Mark Williams for 9-10. He reached the semifinals at the Masters and the Scottish Open. In the Welsh Open he managed to reach the quarterfinals and in the World Championship he reached the final. On his way to the end, Doherty had highly contested matches that were resolved in the last frame: in the first round he won 10-9 a Shaun Murphy, in the second round to Graeme Dott for 13-12, the quarterfinal game against Higgins he won easily by 13-8. In the semifinal with Paul Hunter he went 9-15 below, but he made a spectacular comeback and ended up winning by 17-16.
Played the final against Mark Williams, who came to have an advantage of 11-4, but Doherty came back to put the score 16-16. Williams won the next two frames to set the final score of 16-18. In this championship he played more frames than anyone before or since..
In season 2.003/2.004 reached fourth in the Masters, where they lost 3-6 against Ronnie O’Sullivan, and reached 3 semifinals: and the Scottish Open, Irish Masters y World Open.
In season 2.004/2.005 reached the quarterfinals at the Welsh Open and the semi-finals at the China Open. In the World Championship of 2.005, Doherty defeated Barry Pinches in the first round by 10-5, winning the last 8 frames, but was eliminated in the second round by Alan McManus for 13-11.
In season 2.005/2.006, Doherty won the Malta Cup in February 2.006, beating John Higgins in the final. Doherty others 8-5 below, but he made a comeback, winning four consecutive frames. Doherty said of this victory that it was "the most important in a tournament since the World Championship". In the World Championship of 2.006, Doherty started out brilliantly winning his first match, where he defeated Barry Hawkins by 10-1. He then beat Matthew Stevens by 13-8, playing superbly to win the last 5 frames. He was the favorite in his quarterfinal match against Marco Fu, but he lost 13-10. The season ended as the number 2 of the world, the highest position in the ranking that has ever reached.
Made a solid start to the season 2.006/2.007, by reaching the quarterfinals in what is the closest thing to a home tournament, el Northern Ireland Trophy. He reached the eighth at the Grand Prix and the UK Championship. Made it to the quarterfinals in the next two tournaments, the Masters and the Malta Cup.
In October 2.006, won the Irish Professional Snooker Championships for the second time (after having previously achieved the title in 1.993), surpassing Michael Judge by 9-4 in the end. Lost in the first round of the World Championship and, although clearly disappointed, promised to continue. It was the provisional number 1 in the world for most of the season, but ended up in the post 4 del ranking.
Doherty did not start the season well 2.007/2.008, winning only one match during the first four ranking tournaments. But nevertheless, reached the semi-finals of the Masters with victories over Mark Williams and Shaun Murphy, before losing to later champion Mark Selby. Then, reached the final of the Malta Cup for the fifth time, defeating John Higgins in the semi-finals, before losing to Murphy in the final. Unfortunately for Doherty, none of these tournaments were ranking, that is to say, his performances did nothing to keep him on top 16 for the season 2.008/2.009. He maintained his title of champion at the Irish Professional Snooker Championships, with a resounding triumph for 9-2 about Fergal O’Brien. Became the first Irishman to win the Pot Black tournament, by beating Shaun Murphy for 76-31 in the end.
Lost to Liang Wenbo in the first round of the World Championship, what made it come off the top 16 after 15 years, and the new season began at the post 32. A losing streak in qualifying saw him fall to the top 38 antes del UK Championship.
Doherty's losing streak continued throughout the season 2.008/2.009 in which he won only two games. For the first time, since 1.993, did not qualify for the World Championship after being eliminated in the final qualifying round by Gerard Greene. In the Northern Ireland Trophy he lost in the second round against Ronnie O'Sullivan, in a great match that was decided in the final frame.
Doherty's form saw a rebound in the season 2.009/2.010. Reach the quarterfinals at the Shanghai Masters and the eighth at the Grand Prix. Reached the Legends of Snooker final, who played Stephen Hendry, losing her for 3-5.
In the qualifying rounds of the World Championship, Doherty defeated 6 times finalist Jimmy White for 10-3, and Joe Swail for 10-1. In a fun time, Doherty got on his knees and kissed the carpet on his return to headquarters.. But nevertheless, lost his first round match by 10-4 frente a Mark Selby.
The season 2.010/2.011 it wasn't good for doherty. Lost in qualifying for the German Masters and Welsh Open and crucially, losing 10-6 against Jimmy Robertson in the final stage of qualifying for the World Championship. In this way he had only reached the Crucible in 1 of his last 3 Attempts.
Doherty had an excellent start to the season 2.011/2.012, qualifying for the Australian Goldfields Open, where he reached his first semi-final in a ranking tournament since 2.006. He beat Mark Selby 5-3 in quarterfinals, sealing the match with a cleaning that he rated as the best of his career. In the semifinal he was defeated by Mark Williams by 2-6. In the remainder of the season Doherty qualified for the German Masters and the Welsh Open, but was defeated in the first round by Williams and Mark Allen, respectively. He also reached the final of the Lucan Racing Classic, losing 2-5 against Fergal O’Brien. It was placed in the number 32 of the ranking when entering the qualifiers of the World Championship, where he faced Anthony Hamilton. The party reached the decider, with Doherty 40 points behind, but he benefited from a Hamilton mistake to win 10-9. In the first round he lost to Neil Robertson for 4-10. He finished the season in the position 35 del ranking.
Here is a video of Doherty from 2.011 training at PJ Nolan's Academy.
Doherty started the season 2.012/2.013 losing 4-5 against Stuart Bingham in the second round of the Wuxi Classic and for 3-5 against Martin Gould in the first round of the Australian Goldfields Open.
Got the first 147 of his career in the Paul Hunter Classic minor-ranking tournament, during his first round win against Julian Treiber. He went to the quarterfinals of the tournament, losing 0-4 ante Mark Selby. Doherty was defeated in qualifying for the Shanghai Masters and the UK Championship and was unable to advance beyond the wildcarr round of the International Championship.. At the Scottish Open he reached the semifinals, where he lost 2-4 contra Ding Junhui. Doherty was eliminated in the first round of the German Masters by Peter Lines, but then he had his best streak of the season at the Welsh Open. He beat the four-time world champion, John Higgins, 4-1 y a Tom Ford 4-3, thus reaching the quarterfinals. He faced Stuart Bingham, who defeated him by 3-5. In the last qualifying round for the World Championship he was about to beat Matthew Selt. Going 4-9 down he came back and equalized the score, but the decisive frame ended up losing. The result meant that this was the first season that Doherty did not excel at any of the Triple Crown events.. The season ended in the position 27 del ranking.
Doherty qualified for all ranking tournaments in the season 2.013/2.014, except 2, but failed to advance beyond the second round in either of them. In the Paul Hunter Classic he reached the round of 16, where they lost 4-2 frente a Michael White.
In April, qualified for the World Championship, after a victory for 10-5 against Dechawat Poomjaeng in the final qualifying round. Doherty was the oldest player in the draw in his 19th appearance at the Crucible. After losing to Stuart Bingham 5-4 in the opening session of their first round match, Doherty did his best snooker, taking all six frames from the next session and winning a match in the Crucible for the first time since 2.006. Then lost 13-8 against Alan McManus, the second oldest player in the tournament.
In season 2.014/2.015 Doherty defeated three players to qualify for the Shanghai Masters. He faced Mark Selby in the first round, after coming across a wildcard round in China, losing 5-2. In the UK Championship he reached the sixteenth, al vencer a Mitchell Mann y Michael White, but was defeated by Ricky Walden by 1-6. He was also eliminated in the semifinals of the World Seniors Championship by Fergal O'Brien..
Made it to the final qualifying round of the World Championship after victories over Reanne Evans and Lee Walker, and was defeated 3-10 by Mark Davis. Doherty got the job 45 in the world rankings at the end of the season, the lowest since 1991.
Doherty has played his entire career with a deformed cue randomly selected from the cue rack at his snooker club., the Jason’s. Revealed, humorously, that the club manager wanted to charge you 5 pounds per taco, but he haggled until he left it in 2 pounds. Ken Doherty explained: “Is deformed. I must be one of the few professionals who plays with a deformed cue, but it wouldn't occur to me to change it”.
Doherty nearly went blind in a domestic accident in 2.002, by having a fall and damaging the left eye. But nevertheless, the distinctive scar on his right cheek dates back to his 7th birthday, when he fell from the roof of a shed and hit a metal trash can.
He started working at the BBC, giving coverage on television at snooker games. He also became a regular BBC commentator from the year 2.009.
Currently represents an Irish poker website, appearing in radio commercials, and playing regularly in tournaments, where players receive a bonus to beat it.
Among his hobbies, besides poker and soccer, there is visiting art galleries and going to the opera.
During this season he has been able to win the current world number one, Mark Selby, at the Riga Open.