Barry Hawkins: ‘It’s been hard, you forget you’re a snooker player’


Barry Hawkins is feeling his way into the season after a slow start (Picture: Getty Images)

Barry Hawkins says it was easy to forget that he’s a snooker player over the first few months of the season, finding it difficult to muster up the motivation amid the stop-start schedule.

It has been a quiet start to the campaign for most of the top 16, with those players heading straight to the venues of Home Nations events while the rest of the tour play qualifiers.

The Hawk had played just 12 matches since exiting the World Championship back in April, with half of those games coming at the Championship League in July and August.

A first round exit from the British Open and a long wait to play before and after that event left Hawkins forgetting what his job was and enjoying life away from the table a bit much to want to get on the practice table.

‘It’s been really difficult,’ Hawkins told ‘Obviously before the British Open we found out we were having seven weeks off after that [due to the postponed Turkish Masters].

‘So it was hard getting motivated for that tournament knowing we were having a massive break afterwards. It felt like we were just practicing to put your cue away again, it was just hard work.

‘The tournaments are coming thick and fast now, though, it’s a good time to get your head down, get a few results, get some confidence and have a couple of good runs under the belt.

‘When you put your cue away for quite a long time you start enjoying your life, taking it easy and you kind of forget you’re a snooker player.

‘I forgot at some points, I forgot I had to go and play snooker for a living we had so long off. It takes a while to get back into it, you lose that sharpness. It’s just the little shots here and there, but I feel like I want to start practicing again which is a good sign.’

The 42-year-old is not one to tick over with an hour-a-day on the practice table, saying that when he’s on holiday, he’s very much on holiday.

Betfred World Snooker Championship - Day Eight

Hawkins is a three-time ranking event winner (Picture: Getty Images)

‘Oh, when it’s away it’s away, mate,’ Hawkins said of his cue. ‘It’s in the cupboard and it’s not coming out. It’s been out every day now though, so I just need to keep putting the work in.’

The patchy spell is behind the world number 14 now, though, and he is now focussing on getting his hands on a fourth ranking title, if he can get some consistency.

‘Everyone’s trying to win a tournament, that’s the ideal scenario, take the pressure off for the rest of the season,’ he said. ‘But it’s so tough, you can have a good performance one day then the next day not so good.

‘It’s about getting that consistency. If I can be consistent then I’m tough to beat and I’ve got a chance, but I’m just searching for that consistency and the confidence.’

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