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“I can’t play any better than that at my age” admits Mark Williams after thrashing Jackson Page

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Page congratulates Williams (Photo by Ian Hodgson/PA Images/Alamy Stock Photo)

Mark Williams admits he “can’t play any better” than in his ruthless victory over protégé Jackson Page in the Last 16 of the World Championship. 

Williams stormed to an emphatic 13-3 win over his young Welsh compatriot with a session to spare at The Crucible on Friday.

The 47-year-old produced six century breaks in a vintage display to set up a Quarter-Final meeting with either defending champion Mark Selby or Yan Bingtao.

The three-time World Champion has dropped only six frames en route to the Quarter-Finals, having thrashed Michael White 10-3 in Round One, and admits he is performing at the peak of his powers.

“I can’t play any better than that at my age,” said Williams. “I’m just trying to pick my game apart and trying to put other things in it to hit the ball that bit harder and evolve my game.

“I know I’m going to fall down the rankings eventually, so I’m trying to tweak little things to try to stay up there for as long as I possibly can.

“You can’t keep playing like that; you’re bound to have a couple of bad sessions somewhere along the line, so when you do have them, you’ve got to try to scrap it out at 4-4 or 5-3 behind.

“That’s the main thing if you want to win this tournament, because it’s a marathon.

“I knew coming here that I had a chance because I’ve been playing good all year.

“I think it was 50/1 you could have got on me at one stage and some of the people in front of me on the betting I know I’ve got more chance of winning it than they have.”

Williams, who has helped nurture Page into an established professional, believes the 20-year-old will learn from his harsh debut defeat and admits he can take little satisfaction from the scoreline.

He added: “I put him under pressure straight away and made lots of breaks.

“If it was anybody else with a session to spare, I’d love it. I don’t feel like that playing Jackson.

“I was there last year; I lost with a session to spare. It’s a good learning curve for him; it’s about how you bounce back from it. We’ll see how he does from here.”

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