ASHLEY CARTY admits he needs to stop playing catch-up – and his string of slow starts make him feel like he’s always on the brink of the dreaded M1.
The Rotherham player slipped to a 4-2 defeat against Jackson Page in the second round of the Scottish Open as his tricky start to the season continued in Milton Keynes.
Carty, the world No.96, struggles to come out of the blocks quickly and says his early match jitters make him fearful of the long journey home.
The frustrated 25-year-old said: “I got off to a really bad start and full credit to Jackson, he took his chances well.
“He’s played well but I let him play well. I thought I was going to be on the M1 after about 20 minutes!
“I don’t know what it was. On the practice table before the game I felt brilliant.
“I’ve been having a couple of slow starts this season and last season, so it’s something I’m trying to find out why. But once I get the first frame, I do settle into the games and normally play quite well.
“I don’t understand why. Normally when I do get a good start, I go on to win the game quite a few times.
“Last season, and the start of this season, I’m going 2-0 down quite a lot of time and against these kind of players you just can’t do it.
“It’s something I’m trying to work on. Maybe I’m just putting too much pressure on myself trying to get off to a good start instead of being relaxed.”
Carty knocked in breaks of 74 and 70 but visits of 106, 90 and 76 from 19-year-old Page hauled him over the line.
The Thurcroft man, who memorably qualified for this summer’s World Championships for the first time in his career, has shown signs of promise at the start of the season and reached the second round of the prestigious UK Championship.
Carty also scaled the last 32 of the European Masters but was unable to emulate that run at this week’s Scottish Open.
He’ll be dashing back up north for the festive period and reckons a few weeks away from the baize can haul him to success in 2021.
“I’ll go home now, put the cue away for a week or two and enjoy Christmas with my family,” he added.
“It’s been quite hectic, which is great for the snooker tour, but it’s nice to have a week off and relax.”
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