Ali Carter has insisted that his successful battle with cancer will provide him with the grit and determination to end his wait for victory in a major UK tournament final.
The 34-year-old has been defeated in two World Championship finals in 2008 and 2012 and in two semi-finals of the UK Championships.
However snooker took a backseat in June this year, when the Essex-born player was diagnosed with testicular cancer.
The setback meant that Carter couldn't play any snooker for two months, but, after an operation to remove the cancer led to him being given the all-clear, he returned to play in qualifying for the Shanghai Masters in August.
In his first game back he beat Adam Duffy 5-4, despite his obvious lack of practice.
"This cancer scare has refocused me," Carter told BBC Essex. "I thought to myself I've got to get my head down and do well while it's still there for me."
He added: "Something really bad has happened to me but I feel like something really good is going to happen to me because I'm focused."
Carter's career has always been hindered by health problems. He has suffered from Crohn's disease for the last 10 years, and the resulting fatigue has compromised his concentration and ability to practice, thus threatening his playing career.
However, he has battled through the problem to win three ranking titles, including the Welsh Open, Shanghai Masters and German Masters.
He has also reached two World Championship finals, where he was beaten by Ronnie O'Sullivan on both occasions.
But Carter is confident he can now end his frustrations in UK tournaments having beaten the cancer.
He said: "I'm ready. I've been practising harder than I ever have - certainly compared to the last three or four years.
"I'd like to win a big tournament in the UK, that world mean more to me than any other tournament."
Carter, who is nicknamed 'The Captain' due to him being a trained pilot, will get his next opportunity to complete his goal when the UK Championships start in November.
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