Stephen Hendry made a century in the second frame of his much-anticipated comeback, but was beaten 4-1 by Matthew Selt in the first round of the Gibraltar Open.
The seven-time world champion was playing his first match in nine years after coming out of retirement and showed signs of his quality, particularly with an impressive 107 break - the 776th century of his career.
But Selt played at a high level and made several long pots to ensure Hendry's return to the tour ended in defeat.
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"Selt has played as well as he can, I don't think he could have performed any better than this," said Eurosport commentator Neal Foulds.
"Stephen looks OK and I would like to think he takes encouragement from this. I liked what I saw from him, it's just the finer points of the game that are not as sharp as he could have been. He will be better next time he plays."
'Vintage Hendry!' - Seven-time world champion produces glorious century in comeback match
With so much expectation over his return, Hendry’s first shot in nine years was probably not what he dreamed of – a foul as he tried to roll up to the pack and left it short.
Selt made 36 before he fouled when he potted the black, split the pack and a red rolled into the middle pocket.
Hendry replied with a break of 38 before he missed a red into the middle, giving Selt the chance to clean up and take the frame.
But Hendry got among the balls again in the second frame and this time made it count with a well-constructed century, including an excellent red when he looked to have run out of position at 62.
He finished on 107, with Eurosport commentator Phil Studd calling it “vintage Hendry”.
Selt moved back in front with two half-century breaks of 65 and 50 in the third frame. The world No 35 looked in good touch and made three long reds in the fourth frame to extend his advantage.
But at 41-0 ahead in the next frame he allowed Hendry to the table when he touched a red ball with his hand.
Hendry could only make six before a fortunate plant from Selt helped him wrap up the match.
Tuesday’s Gibraltar Open schedule and results
- Steven Hallworth 2-4 Jamie Jones
- ChenZifan 4-1 Daniel Womersley
- Ian Burns 1-4 Leon Fernandez
- JackLisowski 4-1 Farakh Ajaib
- MarkWilliams 4-1 Li Hang
- JimmyWhite 4-3 Joe O’Connor
- Chang Bingyu 4-3 Eden Sharav
- Nigel Bond 3-4 ChrisWakelin
- Kyren Wilson 4-2 Kuldesh Johal
- Andrew Higginson 4-3 Lu Haotian
- Stuart Carrington 4-0 Gao Yang
- Zhao Xintong 4-1 Ashley Carty
- Ken Doherty 4-3 Matthew Stevens
- Mark Selby 4-1 Sam Craigie
- Peter Devlin 3-4 Daniel Wells
- Elliot Slessor 4-3 Jackson Page
- Matthew Selt 4-1 Stephen Hendry
- Barry Hawkins 4-2 Luo Honghao
- Martin Gould 4-2 David Grace
- Zhao Jianbo 4-0 Noppon Saengkham
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