EPTC 5 - Day 1

06:15:00 Ramona Dragomir 0 Comments

Hamm is hosting the EPTC 5 event
Back to Germany folks for some class snooker, some pretty precious ranking points and all the fun we can get. Well, maybe the players won’t be getting too much fun, since the EPTC events are quite the marathon, but at least they do what they like best, right? :-P
So, this time the beautiful and "baroque" stylized town of Hamm is the host for the EPTC 5 event, as the players try to make it all the way through. I have to remind you that there’s only one EPTC event left, so after that the big brains from World Snooker will draw the line and pick the best 24 contestants to take part in the PTC/EPTC final due to take place next year.
Unfortunately, EPTC 5 will miss the likes of Ali Carter, Ronnie O`Sullivan (well, there’s no surprise there to be honest! :-P), Stephen Hendry, Neil Robertson, Ding Junhui, Adrian Gunnell, Liang Wenbo and Jamie Burnett.

I always start with the ones who were good and lucky enough to reach the Last 16 round, and this time it won’t be any different, so let’s get started, shall we? :-))
A beautifully surprise to see Barry Pinches doing so good, although he only played two matches yesterday (his first opponent being Ali Carter, who withdrew from the competition). He whitewashed Luca Brecel 4-0 and ended on a very tight 4-3 the match against Ryan Day, but now he is in the next round safe and sound. And this is quite a performance for the PTC 4 event champion, as after he won this title, his performance was very poor.

Barry Pinches made it through the Last 16
Next in line, Robert Milkins ended his day after defeating Matt Couch 4-1, crashing Rod Lawler 4-0 and surprisingly sending home Peter Ebdon by a 4-2 score.
This year’s World Championship runner-up, Graeme Dott also secured himself a place into the Last 16 round, as he beat Reanne Evans 4-0, Andy Hicks 4-1 and Stuart Bingham 4-3, as for the EPTC 1 winner Judd Trump, he won 4-2 over Rory McLeod and hammered Anthony McGill 4-0.
And since this seemed to be the PTC/EPTC events` winners day, Tom Ford (the one who lifted the PTC 3 event trophy) defeated Patrick Eisle 4-3 and the 1997 world champion, Ken Doherty 4-0.

But certainly that the biggest surprise was the performance John Higgins has blown us away with. Nervous about playing again after more then five months on the stand but eager to prove he can still do it, John rushed into defeating Joe Jorgia 4-2, crashing the strategist Dave Harold 4-0 and ending his day with a very, very tight 4-3 score against Martin Gould. Now, you might be a fan or not, but you have to admit this is pretty outstanding after all. And I’m not referring to what people said about him during and after the scandal, but the amount of time that he stayed without practicing snooker.

A glorious day as Higgins marked his return to the baize
The last two to qualify into the next round were Ricky Walden, as he beat Nicole Breitenstein and Allan Taylor 4-0 and Liam Highfield 4-1, but also Anthony Hamilton, who won 4-3 over Issara Kachaiwong, 4-1 over Allan McManus and 4-3 over the PTC 6 winner, Dominic Dale.
Unfortunately it wasn’t a very good day for the fresh World Seniors Champion, Jimmy White who was sent home after losing 4-0 to Rod Lawler in his first match and for the Chinese Chen Zhe, who got beat 2-4 by Rory McLeod.
You can check the score here.

Today another series of outstanding players will try to gain a place into the Last 16 round, as the clock is ticking and they need to go as far as possible in these competitions so they can secure a place in the big final.
See you tomorrow for what I hope it will be, another surprising day! :-P