Mark Williams hopes he can carry the superb form he showed in winning the Sanyuan Foods China Open into the Betfred.com World Snooker Championship later this month.
Williams broke a four-year drought without a ranking title by beating home favourite Ding Junhui 10-6 in the final in Beijing on Sunday. The left-hander from Cwm in South Wales has already conquered the Crucible twice, in 2000 and 2003, and heads to Sheffield with the chance to join contemporaries Ronnie O'Sullivan and John Higgins on three World crowns.
"I'm really looking forward to it, which is a good feeling because this time last year all I wanted to do was to get back into the top 16," said 35-year-old Williams, who has now won 17 ranking titles in all, including six in Asia. "I could play Ronnie in the second round, if we both win our first match, and that's as tough a draw as I can get. But I've got a lot of confidence in my game now and if I play well I will be a dangerous opponent for anyone.
"Obviously I've got a lot of good memories at the Crucible having won there twice. I'd love to get through to the semi-finals because once you get to the one-table situation the atmosphere is fantastic."
The tournament runs from April 17 to May 3, and as well as Williams, O'Sullivan, Ding and Higgins, contenders for the crown will include the likes of Stephen Hendry, Steve Davis, Shaun Murphy and Mark Selby.