David Morris followed up his giant-killing victory over world champion Mark Selby with an equally impressive win over Dave Gilbert at the Coral UK Championship in York.
The 26-year-old for Kilkenny matched his run at York’s Barbican Centre of 12 months ago by reaching the fourth round with a 6-2 success.
World No 62 Morris now looks finally to be delivering on the huge promise he showed as a teenager, when tipped as the natural successor to Ken Doherty.
Morris, who fell off the tour just two years ago, made a gutsy clearance in the opening frame and took heart from that, surging 4-0 ahead and maintaining that lead.
Morris, who got back on tour last year, said: “The first frame set the tone for the game, I was maybe 50 points behind with the black on the cushion and I managed to clear up.
“Then I went 4-0 up but he didn’t do too much wrong, and I really think things could have been different if he had got that first one.
“I did take a lot of confidence into the match after beating Mark Selby, the world champion, but that can work against you in the next match.
"A lot of people back home in Ireland were probably expecting me to win the next one easily, but they maybe don't realise how good Dave Gilbert is.
“You have to play well to beat him but I managed to get over the line. I do feel I am breaking through a bit and people know a bit more about me now.
“Last year was big for that, my first year back on tour after falling off and getting to the quarters in Wuxi and doing well here. Maybe more is expected now, and I am doing my best.
“I am still improving and learning every time I play a top-eight player, that still hasn’t happened that much in my career. I need to be a quick learner and make up for lost time.
“I am not saying I can win the tournament but I am still in and I want to do myself justice. I don’t fear anyone. It’s not like boxing, you don’t get hit, if you lose, you lose a snooker match.”
Morris will take on either Mark Williams or Stephen Maguire in the fourth round.
There was not such good news for three-time UK finalist Ken Doherty, however.
The 45-year-old from Dublin ran into the in-form Ricky Walden, buoyed by success in last month's International Championship and now a live contender in York.
Chester’s Walden, 32, never let the former world champion into the contest, moving 3-1 up at the interval and making back-to-back centuries of 129 and 128 to seal a 6-1 victory.