|Ding on his way to the quarter-finals|
A half an hour over one and China’s top player, Ding Junhui was meeting the man from Wales, also known by the fans as “The Welsh Potting Machine", Mark Williams. The two of them have had some very interesting battles over the past months, as Ding beat Williams in the World Open semi-final, then Williams beat Ding in a PTC event, short after that they had a Premier League match to dispute when they drew and here they were again.
In the commentary box John Parrott and John Virgo were in charge of the match, while in the arena the referee Jan Verhaas was the boss for they boys` clash. And so it all started.
Although a few second away from the beginning, Ding potted the cue ball by mistake, he succeeded in taking over the first frame, but Williams replayed with runs of 38 and 36 to level up. At that point I though “Man, this is going to be such a tight battle all the way through!" But boy, was I wrong!
|Williams: "Maaan, that sucks!"|
Williams decided to prolong the suspense and started winning one break after another. Wow! Was this the comeback? Was he going to make it? Unfortunately no as the tenth frame was won by the little Chinese guy with a break of 75. Final score 6-4.
Not the best match ever as none of the players were at their best, but Ding seemed a bit more consistent in his way of potting the balls in the right pockets than Mark.
|Dott is focusing in winning the match|
Technically speaking Dott had an amazing start, such a thrill to see the guy back in business after some really hard times. Before the mid-session break, Dott was already in the lead as he rushed in to take over the first two frames; he hit breaks of 118, 36 and 65 to prove his point. Higgins took over his first frame of the match, scoring his first actually points (until then he sat quietly in his chair) in the form of a 79 break, but Dott kept his wonderful way of playing as he hit a 68 one to make the score 3-1 in his favor.
After the break Higgins seemed eager to win his way back into the game so he build himself a break of 73 to take over the sixth frame. The score being now 3-2, this meant that the next frame was going to be a crucial one, so maybe that’s the reason why this was the longest frame of the match. A lot of safety shots were involved, a lot of snookers were played, a lot of misses too, but in the end Higgins succeeded in bringing the score at 3-3.
|Higgins: "I`ve had better days."|
An exceptional performance by Graeme Dott, who after the poor shape he showed during last week Championship League, seems to be back in the race for the big prize! John seemed quite tense during the match, in my opinion. I don’t know if that’s what he was talking about a few days before the tournament started (you know, the fact that he feels overwhelmed by the Wembley atmosphere), or he was just not feeling good, maybe he was ill or something like that, but his face was all red and tense along the way. He didn’t play in that same way he did it after returning to the circuit and that has cost him the place in the quarter-finals.
Today we have another set of great matches, so please follow the schedule written below.
13:30 (UK time) - Ronnie O`Sullivan v. Mark Allen
19:00 (UK time) - Stephen Maguire v. Marco Fu
12:15-13:30 Higgins v. Dott highlights (British EuroSport)
13:30-16:30 Masters Snooker (BBC 2)
13:30-16:30 Masters Snooker (British EuroSport)
19:00-19:30 Masters Snooker (BBC 2)
19:00-22:00 Masters Snooker (British EuroSport)
23:20-00:10 Masters Snooker: Highlights (BBC 2)
00:10-02:10 Masters Snooker: Extra (BBC 2)
For those of you away with stuff to do and no TV in front of your eyes, please note that you can also follow snooker online at www.fromsport.com by selecting the snooker competition from the list. Enjoy snooker my dears! :-)