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Ronnie O’Sullivan O39;Sullivan level with McGill Selby wins


Ronnie O’Sullivan Ronnie O’Sullivan level with O'Sullivan Selby McGill, wins

Fri, 23 Apr 2021 00:00:00 +0100

Anthony McGill reels in reigning champion Ronnie O'Sullivan to leave their World Championship second-round tie level at 4-4

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World number 16 Anthony McGill reeled in defending champion Ronnie O'Sullivan to leave their second-round World Championship match finely poised at 4-4 after an enthralling first session.

Six-time winner O'Sullivan was at his majestic best as breaks of 81, 105 and 138 saw him race into a 3-1 lead.

O'Sullivan, 45, went 4-1 up and missed a great chance to make it 5-1, but the Scot rallied to win the next three.

Elsewhere, there were first-round wins for both Shaun Murphy and Mark Selby.

McGill's comeback should have been even sweeter. The two-time ranking event winner, a Crucible semi-finalist last year, was in prime position to make a 147 in frame seven, but left the black agonisingly sitting over the pocket on 97.

It would have been just the 12th maximum in Crucible history and earned him £40,000, plus at least a share of the tournament high score prize of £15,000.

The best-of-25 frame match resumes on Friday morning and plays to a finish on Friday evening.

Shaun Murphy fought back from 5-3 down to secure his place in the last 16 with a 10-7 win over over Mark Davis.

Davis, 48, was making his 12th appearance at snooker's showpiece event and outplayed the out-of-sorts 2005 champion in the opening session.

But Murphy, buoyed by a century in the final frame, reduced the gap to 5-4 and was much improved on the resumption.

Breaks of 56 and 92 and helped him win four of the next five frames for an 8-6 lead and, after sharing the next two, the world seven number got over the line with stunning 131.

“I got out of jail,” said Murphy, who faces China's Yan Bingtao, the reigning Masters champion, in round two.

“Mark always plays the right shot and he is so, so hard to beat. I knew I needed a fast start today. It's a big victory and I'm thrilled with how I finished it “

Three-time champion Mark Selby joined Murphy in the second round with a devastating 10-1 demolition of qualifier Kurt Maflin.

Selby, 37, needed just two frames to progress having scored two tons and six further breaks of more than 50 in a one-sided opening session against a player who reached the Crucible quarter-finals last season.

And the Leicester potter wasted little time in setting up a last-16 meeting with Northern Ireland's Mark Allen by taking the first two frames of the evening

Maflin, the world number 25, should have got a second frame on the board at 9-1 down, but missed the final black and left it over the pocket for Selby.

“I did the damage yesterday so it was a strange mindset coming into the second session,” Selby said.

“The first round is always the hardest. You never feel part of the tournament until you get it out of the way. This season I have played as good as I can play – overall it has been a great season.”

The evening's other match – the second last-16 tie of the day – saw 2010 champion Neil Robertson come back from 3-2 down to lead world number 14 Jack Lisowski 5-3.

The Australian led with a half-century, but a break of 85 helped Lisowski edge ahead.

Robertson responded in style though, levelling the match in a tense sixth frame and taking the final two frames of the session with scores of 135 and 76.

They play the second of their three scheduled sessions on Friday afternoon.

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Ronnie O’Sullivan

Fri, 23 Apr 2021 00:00:00 +0100

The 30-year-old McGill was looking to become only the eighth different player to make a 147 clearance at the World Snooker Championship

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Betfred World Snooker Championships 2021 – Day Six – The Crucible

Anthony McGill missed a shot at a Crucible maximum but clawed back a three-frame deficit to tie defending champion Ronnie O’Sullivan at 4-4 after the first session of their second-round match at the World Snooker Championship.

McGill left his 13th black tottering over the bottom pocket in the seventh frame as he aimed to become only the eighth different player to achieve a fabled 147 at the Crucible.

But the tenacious 30-year-old, who shrugged off an epic semi-final defeat to Kyren Wilson last year, is unlikely to lose much sleep at missing out on a £40,000 bonus after turning the match around ahead of Friday morning’s resumption.

Both players set the tone for a high quality session from the start, with O’Sullivan delivering a quickfire 81 to win the opening frame and McGill responding with a 79 to draw level.

Consecutive centuries of 105 and 138 saw the six-time winner cruise into a 3-1 lead and despite missing two relatively simple blacks in the fifth frame, he was not punished and a 49 to pink saw him extend his lead to 4-1.

They were worrying signs for McGill, but he knows all about being put through the Crucible mill, and despite missing an effective frame-ball pink in the next it was O’Sullivan who made the crucial error, an over-screwed red handing McGill the frame.

McGill looked superbly set for his maximum in the next but ran aground when he left the black in the jaws on 97, yet once again he shrugged off any possible disappointment with a break of 40 in the eighth and final frame of the session securing parity.

Three-time champion Mark Selby grabbed the two frames he needed to complete a 10-1 rout of last year’s surprise quarter-finalist Kurt Maflin.

Selby was in merciless form throughout the match, firing two centuries and six further breaks over 50 as he set up a second round meeting with Mark Allen.

Selby said: “I came into the tournament feeling confident about my game and it’s got to be up there – especially doing it in the first round of a world championship, because it’s always difficult to get over that first hurdle.”

Another former winner, Shaun Murphy, came from behind to defeat veteran qualifier Mark Davis 10-7.

Murphy started the final session trailing 4-5 but gradually turned the match in his favour and a final flourish of 131 saw him over the line and into a second-round meeting with Masters champion Yan Bingtao.

“I stole two frames I had no right to win and that energised me a bit and gave me a kick up the backside,” said Murphy. “Finishing last night’s session with a century gave me good vibes overnight and set the tone.”

Breaks of 135 and 76 saw Neil Robertson establish a 5-3 advantage over Jack Lisowski at the end of the first session of their second-round clash.

Robertson looked out of sorts for much of the session and Lisowski missed a number of chances to make him pay, before the Australian came good to end the evening on top.

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– April 23, 2021
Ronnie O’Sullivan O39;Sullivan level with McGill Selby wins