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Snookered tight behind the black on the cushion, Heathcote had no choice but to try an ingenious escape: send the white ball rattling into the jaws of a corner pocket and spinning up the table - hopefully towards the object yellow ball.
Not only did Heathcote's once-in-lifetime shot work, it also crashed the yellow straight into the pocket - and left him perfect on the green. What did we just watch?
:speaking_head: "One of the most extraordinary shots in snooker history!"- Eurosport UK (@Eurosport_UK) April 11, 2021
:speaking_head: "I can't believe it"
Have you ever seen anything like this?! pic.twitter.com/Q5U4vXq9OE
While the pot element of the shot was undoubtedly a fluke, perhaps Heathcote deserves some luck for trying such a unique escape shot (although he was arguably left with little choice).
Truly even Ronnie O'Sullivan himself couldn't pull off a shot this special, even if it was partly unintentional.
Man didn't even apologise so must have meant the pot and positioning https://t.co/7m8QhaFjkh- TheyCallMeMrTibbs (@NoIdentityFound) April 12, 2021
Former snooker pro Neal Foulds and commentator Philip Studd sounded suitably flabbergasted as they called the shot live on Eurosport.
"Using the jaws of the pocket... Oh my goodness me," gasped Studd, as the yellow sunk in. "That is unbelievable. That's got to be one of the most extraordinary shots in snooker history."
Foulds added: "I can't believe it... That is one of the most extraordinary shots out of a snooker you could ever see. This is mindboggling."
I had to watch this four times before I could take it in https://t.co/4LiNa42dfk- Simon Morrison (@HouseOfLard) April 11, 2021
I've watched this several times. Quite remarkable shot :flushed: https://t.co/ehhdeVP0pk- Cornish Blue (@1cornishblue) April 12, 2021
Despite the remarkable escape/fluke leaving world No 67 Heathcote with five colours left to win the frame, he actually lost it to Day.
Welshman Day went on to win the match - the penultimate round of qualifying for the 2021 World Championship at the Crucible - on a final-frame decider.
Can't quite believe what I've just seen. https://t.co/rW7JS09Ycb- Gareth:flag_it: (@ErfinderRotwang) April 11, 2021
Still, Heathcote will always have the memory of that shot and the knowledge that he's basically a cue-wielding deity who can pot his way out of snookers from even the most difficult position.
So that is quite handy going forward.
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