Mark Allen makes ‘completely alien’ change to game in stunning Mark Williams win

Mark Allen was in incredible form on Tuesday at the Players Championship (Picture: Getty Images)

Mark Allen says he has made a mystery change to his game this week at the Players Championship and it is clearly working after a superb 6-3 win over Mark Williams in the opening round.

The Pistol made three centuries in the first three frames, including a 146 in the opening frame, then won three more with breaks of 94, 70 and 68.

It was a stunning performance from the Northern Irishman, who has not been in brilliant form in recent weeks, but has tweaked something to rediscover his best.

‘Any win against Mark is a good win, but to play like that and score like that, that’s what I needed because I haven’t been doing that much,’ Allen said on ITV.

‘I’m not going to go into it, but I am trying something a bit different this week, so let’s see if it works.’

Allen would not let slip what he is working on, but said it is a small technical change to improve his timing.

‘I’m just going to leave you to stew, I’m not telling you,’ he said. ‘It is a timing issue that I feel like I’ve had in recent months. So the technical change I’ve made I’m hoping will correct that timing issue.

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Allen will play Gary Wilson in the quarter-finals (Picture: Getty Images)

‘It feels like a massive change to me, you can probably look at it and think nothing’s different, but for me it feels completely alien. But it’s working so far. As long as I keep playing like that I’ll be happy.’

The world number three has won the Champion of Champions and Shoot Out this season, but has struggled for consistency.

His confidence in his A game has never diminished, though, saying: ‘Being one of the top players you have to have that belief and I’m one of them.

‘If I play my best game I’m not worried about who I play, I feel like I’m better than everyone else whenever I play my best.

‘But ultimately you’re only going to play your best a handful of times a season, so it’s up to me to work on the rest and try and get that B game up. I think I’ve done that better in recent seasons, but there’s still a lot of improvements to do.’

Allen will face newly-crowned Welsh Open champion Gary Wilson in the quarter-finals after he beat Hossein Vafaei 6-4 in his opening game.


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