Jack Lisowski lifts lid on ‘crazy gap year’ from snooker: ‘I’ve had a good craic’

Jack Lisowski has rediscovered his love for snooker (Picture: Getty Images)

Jack Lisowski took a three-month break from snooker in the middle of this season and feels like he is back to his best after his ‘crazy’ time away from his sport.

Jackpot has had a pretty forgettable campaign so far, with one run to a semi-final his best result, but he appears to have regained some fine form at the right time.

The 32-year-old came through World Championship qualifying impressively and then beat Ding Junhui 10-9 in his opening game at the Crucible.

Results this season had not suggested Lisowski was ready to launch a World Championship challenge this year, but he says his break has reinvigorated his game.

‘I’ve been on holiday for the last few months,’ he said. ‘I feel really fresh and just enjoying snooker.

‘I had two three months off. I didn’t really practise at any tournaments I played in. I have been in Dubai for months. My results fell off. But you know, so what? I have probably got another 20-odd years of this. So I figured I can’t keep playing non-stop snooker all of the time.

‘I feel really good, fresh. I never had a break last season. It has been nice to have some time off and be back and feel fresh and happier. It did make me miss it. I was watching the snooker [and thought] God, I have got to get back practising now. I hadn’t felt like that for ages. It felt like a chore for months. I feel good.’

Lisowski begins his clash with Bingham on Saturday night (Picture: Getty Images)

‘I just thought, I still have a really good life. Snooker is the thing that was getting me down. I figured, what can I do? I feel like I haven’t even been a snooker player for six months. It’s nice to be back.’

Asked what he got up to on his three-month jaunt to Dubai he revealed he enjoyed a skydive but left much of the rest up to the imagination.

‘What would you do if you were 32 years old? What do you think I do?’ Lisowski asked with a smile. ‘I jumped out of a plane last month. Yeah, that was crazy. My life is crazy. I have had a good six months. What can I say?

‘I’m 32. I’m single. I might have three or four summers in me throughout the whole of my life where I don’t have a wife or kids. So, I was like, damn, I have got to start enjoy myself a bit. I have been sacrificing the snooker but so what? I’ve had a good craic. I have had a gap year. I’m like a student. I’m back now. Got to study again. Get a job.’

Lisowski admits that he could scarcely have been less interested in snooker at times this season, but feels entirely different now, rejuvenated thanks to his lengthy holiday.

‘I didn’t really care for the last few months. I didn’t care at all. I haven’t done any work. I didn’t want to speak to anyone about snooker. I didn’t really care,’ he said.

‘That’s just how it has been. It’s life. It’s ups and downs. Something just clicked in the last few weeks. Damn, I have got to qualify, I have got to go back and work and I have really enjoyed practising. I feel as sharp as I have done for a few years. It has been really good fun for me.’

After downing Ding for the first time ever, Lisowski faces Stuart Bingham in the second round in Sheffield and he is eyeing up a deep run at the Crucible.

‘I’ve never beat him [DIng] in a game,’ he said. ‘It’s good, my game’s in a really good place, I thought it was a really good game, proved to a lot of people I’ve got bottle, I can take a lot from that match.

‘I’ve got a good chance of going further. But the standard of players left in the tournament…I’ve got a former world champion in the next game. Then possibly Ronnie, then possibly Judd. It’s just so hard to win tournaments.

‘I’m playing well, playing really good stuff, probably the best I’ve played so I feel really good.’


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