Jimmy White is on the verge of crashing out of the Champions Cup in the qualifying stages.

The Whirlwind lost 5-3 against Welshman Matthew Stevens at the Brighton Centre yesterday and now needs a miracle to make the semi-finals.

White, who vowed to win this year's tourn-ament, conceded his chances were all but over.

The 38-year-old people's champion said: "I probably can't qualify now. The trouble has been building big breaks. I've mainly been making 30s but ought to be getting that into the 80s.

"My attitude has been good. I still want to win. I've got qualifying in nine days for the World Championships so I will be going away to focus on that."

The six-times World Championship runner-up pulled level at 3-3 from 3-1 down but lost two scrappy frames to leave his trophy hopes in tatters.

White had already lost his opening Group B match against Ronnie O'Sullivan 5-2 on Monday.

He faces world No 2 John Higgins in the final match tomorrow.

To qualify he needs to win 5-0 and rely on O'Sullivan thrashing Stevens by the same margin.

Stevens, sixth in the ranking, has a better outside chance. He admitted: "I'm not playing as well as I can. The table was quicker than I expected but at least I've got the first win of the season under my belt."

Stevens, who lost his opening game to Higgins, faces O'Sullivan this morning at 11.30am.

Stephen Hendry last night produced a trademark comeback to join Mark Williams in the semi-finals. He came from 4-2 down to defeat Ken Doherty 5-4 and knock the Dubliner out of the event.