Ali Carter at the Crucible Theatre during the 2007 World Championship
25 July 1979 |
|Highest ranking||2 (September and October 2010)|
|16 (as of 7 May 2013)|
|Career winnings||UK£ 1 423 200|
|Highest break||147 (2008 World Championship)|
Allister "Ali" Carter (born 25 July 1979, Colchester, Essex, England) is an English professional snooker player, who lives in Chelmsford. He is a two-time World Championship runner-up, twice losing to Ronnie O'Sullivan, in 2008 and 2012. He has also won three ranking titles and been as high as second in the world rankings.
Carter turned professional in 1996. He first emerged in 1999, winning the WPBSA Association Young Player of the Year award after winning the Benson and Hedges Championship in 1999 – this earned him a wild card place in the Masters. He also reached the semi-finals of the 1999 Grand Prix. It was eight years before he reached another ranking semi-final, the 2007 Malta Cup.
He was close to the elite top 16 for three successive seasons ranking as 17, 19, and 19 through 2003/04, 2004/05 and 2005/06, respectively, before reaching it in the 2006/07 season and remaining there in 2008.
He reached the last 16 (second round) of the World Championship in 2005, after scoring the first 10–0 victory in the event since 1993 against 1993 semi-finalist James Wattana in qualifying. At the 2007 World Championship he beat Andy Hicks in the first round, 10–4, before beating World No. 1 and seven-time champion Stephen Hendry 13–6 to reach his first World Championship quarter-final and guarantee a place in the Top-16. Carter now has a 5–4 record against Hendry; conversely, he has never beaten Ronnie O'Sullivan in 12 attempts.
Carter has at times missed out on opportunities from winning positions, an extreme example being in the first round of the 2007 UK Championship, when Carter led Barry Hawkins 8–3 before Hawkins won the next six frames to win 9–8. However, Carter got his own back on Hawkins during the 2008 World Championship by beating him 10–9 in a 'controversial' finale. Hawkins had levelled the match to 9–9, when the players were pulled out of the arena to allow the evening matches to begin. They returned after one of the evening's two matches had been completed – on a table they had not previously played on. Hawkins felt this break interrupted his momentum, handing the match to Carter. He followed this by defeating two former champions in succession; provisional World Number 1 Shaun Murphy 13–4 in the second round and then 2002 winner Peter Ebdon 13–9 in the quarter-final. In the semi-final on 4 May 2008 he beat Joe Perry 17–15 to book a place against Ronnie O'Sullivan in the final. Carter lost the final 18–8.
Carter scored his first 147 break on 29 April at the 2008 World Championship, one day after Ronnie O'Sullivan had made one in the same tournament. This made Carter the sixth man to achieve this feat at the Crucible (the eighth made there, as O'Sullivan had previously achieved it three times), and the first to have done so without previously winning a tournament. It is the first time two 147s have been made in the same event.
Carter soon showed signs of carrying this form forward in subsequent events. He won his second non-ranking tournament, the Huangshan Cup in China, with a 5–3 win over the reigning Grand Prix champion Marco Fu. In the 2008/09 season Carter reached the semi-final stage on three separate occasions. He progressed to the semi-finals of the 2008/09 season's first ranking event, the 2008 Northern Ireland Trophy before losing 5–6 to O'Sullivan having led 5–4. He reached the same stage of the Grand Prix, defeating veterans Steve Davis and John Parrott before losing to Ryan Day, again 5–6 The third occasion was the UK Championship where wins over Peter Ebdon and Mark Williams were followed by a close 9–7 defeat to the man he was victorious against in the Huangshan Cup final in China, Marco Fu.
After thirteen years as a professional, Carter defeated the likes of Jimmy White, Graeme Dott, Shaun Murphy, Anthony Hamilton, and Joe Swail to finally win his first ranking tournament – the 2009 Welsh Open.
Carter made a slow start to the 2009/2010 season, losing 0–5 to Liang Wenbo in the last 16 of the Shanghai Masters and losing in the first round at the Grand Prix, before reaching the quarter-finals of the UK Championship. As the defending champion at the Welsh Open he progressed to the final but was beaten by John Higgins, the reigning world champion at the time. He finished the season strongly by reaching the semi-finals at the China Open and the World Championship, losing in the latter to eventual champion, Neil Robertson, by 12–17. Of the six ranking tournaments that were staged during the 2009/2010 season, Carter's campaigns were ended by the eventual champion on four occasions, and on another by the runner-up. Carter finished the season by moving up to a career high position of 4th in the world rankings.
Carter won the 2010 Shanghai Masters. Carter had to recover from 1–4 down in the quarter-final to defeat Matthew Stevens 5–4, Stevens missing the final black off its spot in the deciding frame. He then won six frames in a row from 0–2 down to beat Mark Selby 6–2, and edged past qualifier Jamie Burnett 10–7 in the final. The following events were not very successful for Ali Carter,as he was eliminated in the last 32 of the World Open by Mark Williams 1–3,he suffered an early exit against the young talent Mark Joyce in the first round of the UK Championship by 6–9 and also lost his first round match of the 2011 Masters against Peter Ebdon by 5–6.
2011/2012 season 
Carter's 2011/2012 season got off to a poor start as he exited the first two ranking events of the year, the Australian Goldfields Open and the Shanghai Masters, in the first round.[dead link] At the UK Championships he defeated Robert Milkins, but then lost 6–2 to Mark Allen in the last 16. After the match Carter stated on Twitter: "I'm going to retire at the end of the season! And I can't wait!" and that he was "dead serious" about the threat. Later on he admitted the comments were made "in the heat of the moment" but that he did have some "serious thinking to do at the end of the season". His retirement threat looked to be more likely as he lost in the first round in the Masters and the next two ranking events, and then withdrew from the World Open in China due to medical reasons. Although he reached the quarter-finals of the China Open with wins over Dominic Dale and Lu Ning before losing 2–5 to Ding Junhui, Carter found himself out of the world's top 16 for the first time since 2005.
Before the start of the World Championship Carter stated that his future in the game depended on his health, as his ten-year battle with Crohn's disease continued. Three weeks before the start of the event he began cutting out dairy and wheat from his diet resulting in him feeling stronger every day. This looked to have an effect on the snooker table too as he raced into an 8–1 lead over Mark Davis in the opening session of the first round, before returning to close out the match 10–2. He played world number 2 Judd Trump in the second round and from 9–12 behind, produced a superb fightback to record the result of his season to take the match 13–12 and reach the quarter-finals. He defeated impressive debutant Jamie Jones 13–11 in the last eight to book a semi-final with Stephen Maguire. He won this match by a 17–12 scoreline to play in a repeat of the 2008 final against Ronnie O'Sullivan. He lost 11–18, meaning he has now not beaten O'Sullivan in any of their 12 ranking event matches. Despite reaching the final, Carter finished the season ranked world number 17, meaning he had dropped 11 places during the year.
2012/2013 season 
Carter began the season in less than auspicious form as he lost in the first round of both the Wuxi Classic and Australian Goldfields Open. He won his first match in a ranking event of the season by beating Robert Milkins 5–4 in the Shanghai Masters and then whitewashed Stephen Maguire 5–0 to advance to the quarter-finals. He played John Higgins and at 1–4 down threatened a comeback by winning two frames, but lost the next to exit the tournament. A first round defeat in the International Championship followed before he saw off Steve Davis and Mark Joyce in the UK Championship both by 6–2 scorelines and Stuart Bingham 6–4 to make the semi-finals for the first time since 2008. Carter was the victim of a stunning fightback against Shaun Murphy in the semi-finals as he led 8–4 but Murphy levelled at 8–8 and when Carter broke down on a break of 32 in the deciding frame, Murphy stepped in to win 9–8. Carter was beaten 3–6 by Higgins in the first round of the Masters.
Carter scored comfortable victories over Fraser Patrick, Anthony Hamilton and Michael Holt at the German Masters and then took advantage of a poor performance from Neil Robertson to reach the final, where he played Marco Fu. Carter came back from 3–5 down to win 9–6 to secure the third ranking event title of his career. Fu gained revenge in the PTC Finals by beating Carter 4–1 in the second round, before Carter reached the final of the non-televised Championship League but lost 2–3 to Martin Gould. He was edged out 4–5 in the second round of the China Open by Mark Williams. At the World Championship Carter won seven frames in a row to see off Ben Woollaston 10–4 in the first round, and came back from 1–5 in the last 16 against Ronnie O'Sullivan to level at 7–7, before O'Sullivan stepped up a gear to knock out Carter 8–13.
Personal life 
He practised at Chelmsford's Rivermead Snooker Club before buying the club and being the new owner.
Carter also has a keen interest in flying. Although he views snooker as his career at the moment, he has a pilot license which he trained for during a break from the game.
His first child with his partner Millie, a son named Max, was born at one minute past midnight on 1 October 2009, weighing in at 8 lbs 2oz.
Performance and rankings timeline 
|Wuxi Classic||Not held||Non-ranking||1R|
|Australian Goldfields Open||Not held||1R||1R|
|Shanghai Masters||Not held||1R||1R||2R||W||1R||QF|
|International Championship||Not held||1R|
|German Masters[nb 2]||LQ||A||NR||Not held||2R||1R||W|
|World Open[nb 3]||LQ||A||LQ||SF||LQ||1R||1R||QF||2R||1R||RR||2R||SF||1R||1R||1R||1R|
|Players Tour Championship Finals||Not held||DNQ||DNQ||2R|
|China Open[nb 4]||NH||NR||LQ||LQ||LQ||1R||Not held||1R||LQ||2R||1R||2R||SF||QF||QF||2R|
|Premier League[nb 5]||A||A||A||A||A||A||A||A||A||A||A||A||A||A||A||RR||A|
|Championship League||Not held||RR||RR||RR||SF||RR||F|
|Variant format tournaments|
|Former ranking tournaments|
|Scottish Open[nb 6]||A||A||LQ||1R||2R||2R||QF||1R||Not held||MR|
|British Open||LQ||A||LQ||LQ||LQ||QF||QF||1R||3R||Not held|
|Irish Masters||Non-ranking event||2R||LQ||LQ||NH||NR||Not held|
|Malta Cup[nb 7]||LQ||NH||LQ||Not held||LQ||LQ||LQ||LQ||1R||SF||NR||Not held|
|Northern Ireland Trophy||Not held||NR||2R||3R||SF||Not held|
|Bahrain Championship||Not held||1R||Not held|
|Thailand Masters||LQ||A||LQ||LQ||LQ||LQ||NR||Not held||NR||Not held|
|Former non-ranking tournaments|
|Masters Qualifying Event[nb 8]||LQ||LQ||1R||W||1R||1R||2R||LQ||NH||F||A||A||A||A||Not held|
|Scottish Masters||A||A||A||A||LQ||A||LQ||Not held|
|Malta Cup||R||NH||R||Not held||Ranking Event||RR||Not held|
|Brazil Masters||Not held||QF||NH|
|Wuxi Classic[nb 9]||Not held||RR||RR||A||F||R|
|Performance Table Legend|
|LQ||lost in the qualifying draw||#R||lost in the early rounds of the tournament
(WR = Wildcard round, RR = Round robin)
|QF||lost in the quarter-finals|
|SF||lost in the semi–finals||F||lost in the final||W||won the tournament|
|DNQ||did not qualify for the tournament||A||did not participate in the tournament||1R||withdrew from the tournament|
|NH / Not held||means an event was not held.|
|MR / Minor-ranking event||means an event is/was a minor-ranking event.|
|NR / Non-ranking event||means an event is/was no longer a ranking event.|
|R / Ranking event||means an event is/was a ranking event.|
- New players on the Main Tour don't have a ranking.
- The event was called the German Open (1995/1996-1997/1998)
- The event was called the LG Cup (2001/2002-2003/2004) and the Grand Prix (1998/1999-2000/2001 and 2004/2005-2009/2010
- The event was called the China International (1998/1999)
- The event was called the European League (1996/1997)
- The event was called the International Open (1996/1997-1997/1998) and the Players Championship (2003/2004)
- The event was called the European Open (1996/1997, 2001/2002-2003/2004) and the Irish Open (1998/1999)
- The event was called the Benson & Hedges Championship (1993/1994-2002/2003)
- The event was called the Jiangsu Classic (2008/2009–2009/2010)