The lean streak continues for Ian Burns but he maintains that hard work is the only cure after crashing out of the Betway UK Championship.
he Preston potter was brushed aside 6-2 by Matthew Selt in round one at the York Barbican, extending the drought since his last win in late September to five matches.
Burns was right in the contest at 2-2 come the mid-session interval, only for Selt – ranked 57 places above him in the world rankings – to then pull away.
The 32-year-old did reach the quarter-finals of the Paul Hunter Classic back in August but his almost constant struggles ever since have left him frustrated.
“I’m feeling ok with my game,” said Burns. “I’ve struggled this season so far and only really had a decent run at the Paul Hunter Classic but barring that, it has been patchy.
“There’s that many tournaments that you’ve just got to keep working hard on your game and get ready for the next one.
“I’m not sure the Christmas break in a few weeks will benefit me because I’ve not really been running deep in tournaments, I’ve only been having the odd game.
“It’s not like I’ve been having a lot of matches, so I want to go well in the Scottish Open and then the German Masters qualifiers before Christmas.”
Burns is on the first year of a two-year tour card, so doesn’t need to worry about dropping off the pro circuit at the end of the season.
But he still needs to steadily accrue ranking points to avoid a nervy campaign next year and was frustrated at letting a promising position slip against Selt – missing out on £5,000.
“I played ok in patches but he played well,” added Burns. “We were 2-2 at the interval but there were a couple of frames after the interval that swung the match.
“I lost one that went all the way down to the black and that could have gone either way, so it was a bit of a turning point. He’s played alright from there on.
“I’ve come in at the interval at 2-2 and he’s not really missed a ball but I’ve stuck in there. After the interval, the couple of frames got away from me and that made the difference.”
Watch LIVE coverage of the UK Championship on Eurosport and Eurosport Player with Colin Murray and analysis from Jimmy White and Neal Foulds