Another shocking day in the world of snooker with World Number Four Neil Robertson reeling out of the UK Championship courtesy of a 6-1 thrashing by Yan Bingtao.
It was 19 year old Yans first appearance in the last 16 of a Triple Crown event but he was at ease from the very start against two-time UK Champion Robertson. The Chinese youngster made breaks of 66, 74 and 56 which gave him a 5-0 lead over the experienced Australian. Robertson clawed back the deficit to 5-1 in the sixth frame but an epic battle on the final black in seventh saw him dumped out of the competition.
Northern Irelands Mark Allen survived a thrilling final frame against Kurt Maflin last night to book his place in quarter final. Maflin took the first three frames with breaks of 81 and 113 before Allen claimed the next four to take the lead. Allen made mistakes in the eighth which saw Maflin take the frame and level the score. Maflin, the underdog then struck a 128 break to move within one of victory. But Mark “The Pistol” Allen forced a decider with a 68 break in the 10th frame before the incredible drama of the concluding frame.
Also in more dramatic snooker action yesterday, John Higgins beat Stuart Bingham to join Yan Bingtao and Mark Allen in the quarter finals. Bingham led 2-0 before Higgins fought back to 4-4 with top breaks of 93, 78, 58 and 61. The crucial ninth frame went Higgins’ way and he gained the advantage in the tenth with a run of 50. Bingham had one chance to counter but after making 35 he missed a difficult pot with the rest to a top corner which he blames on a mobile phone interruption from the crowd and that proved to his last shot as Higgins sealed victory. Higgins will face Chinese youngster Yan Bingtao in the quarter final tomorrow.
In UK Championship Quarter Final deciders today, Ronnie O’Sullivan goes head to head with Ding Junhui, Gary Wilson plays Nigel Bond. In this evenings session Michael White plays Stephen Maguire and Matthew Stevens goes head to head with Mark Selby.
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