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Writing this blog, it feels like a lot has happened since I last posted.

For starters, the reaction to my new glasses has been phenomenal. There’s been plenty of talk about them on Twitter especially and reaching the last 16 of ranking event for the first time it looks as though they’ve done the trick.

I certainly felt more confident playing in Belfast, but I also think psychological they helped me too. Most snooker players will tell you that a change is always good; it helps you to refocus and start a fresh.

I went into the Northern Ireland Open feeling nothing but positive thoughts and the results on the table reflected this. I was especially pleased with my performance against Kyren Wilson because I scored heavily and showed exactly what I’m capable of on TV and against one of the top players.

Of course, I was absolutely delighted with the run because it’s the furthest I’ve been in a ranking event before, but I was disappointed with my performance against Elliot (Slessor).

I almost felt like I ran out of steam playing two matches in one day and didn’t produce anywhere near my best form, but my progress on the whole definitely gives me something to build on.

York bound

I spoke in my last blog about the glasses hopefully being a lucky omen and I suppose they were to a certain extent; I’m hoping this continues in York when I begin on Thursday in the UK Championship against Andrew Higginson.

This tournament is one of the bigger events on the calendar and one I really look forward to, especially if I get through the first round and get the chance to play in the main arena.

Last year, I beat Mark King in the opening round and then lost to Luca Brecel in the last 64 in a decider after leading 5-3. That was massively disappointing, but all you can do is hope that you learn from every setback like that.

This time, I’m a little bit more experienced and full of confidence after my run last week.

As a player working hard to retain my place on the tour, the UK is one of those events where a run could do wonders for your ranking. That’s an exciting proposition and makes me extra keen to do well.

I’m feeling good and quite relaxed at the moment and long may it continue.

Thanks as always for the support.

#SamCraigieBlog