Mark King wins Northern Ireland Open in dramatic final against Barry Hawkins
Mark King won the Northern Ireland Open in a dramatic final on Sunday evening, defeating Barry Hawkins 9-8.
Hawkins got off to a strong start as he took the first two frames in the best-of-17 final.
A fantastic break of 110 from King saw him recover in the third but Hawkins won the next three frames to open up a 5-1 lead.
However, King ensured that his opponent stayed in sight as he clawed back the next two frames and stayed within touching distance.
After the interval, King played some inspired snooker as won six frames in a row to open up a 7-5 lead.
Hawkins was not finished though and responded with a fantastic two frames of his own to draw level, but King quickly went back ahead.
In the 16th frame Hawkins opening up a healthy lead, but King forced a double error from Hawkins with a snooker on the green. King seemed set to take the frame before a mistake on the penultimate black allowed Hawkins back in as the topsy-turvy match continued to enthral.
What followed was a remarkable sequence which culminated in a shoot-out for the black as the frame stretched beyond an hour.
King missed a double after Hawkins had broken and Hawkins potted to ensure it went to a deciding frame.
And it was King who held his nerve to secure his first ranking title 25 years after turning professional.