Sunday, 21 April 2013

World Championship Day 2 - First-time win for Walden and White


Walden breaks the curse
It seems that congratulations are in order for both Ricky Walden and Michael White, the lads managing to record their first Crucible win.

Walden scored a great victory of 10-1 in front of Michael Holt, while Crucible-debutant Michael White crushed fellow-country Mark Williams 10-6 in order to grab a place amongst the Last 16.

Although it wasn't too much of a shock to see Walden win over Holt, especially since he ended the first session on an 8-1 scoreline, it was interesting to see how the player that won the Wuxi Classic last year kept it cool and didn't let his guard down, even if it was pretty clear he'll win the match.

Holt got hammered
So with breaks of 61, 22 and 23, added to the ones he previously hit on Saturday (76, 55, 140, 78, 50 and 34), Ricky Walden has broken the curse and got a well deserved place in the next round.

Michael White was on fire! Many would tend to think that the emotions of a Crucible premiere will made the youngster miss his chance to win, but nothing could be far from the truth.

Over-the-moon Michael White
From the very first start (aka. Yesterday) the 21-year-old lad from Neath got on a 2-0 lead over the more experienced Mark Williams and although "The Welsh Potting Machine” drew level, it was crystal clear who, of the two players, was the best.

With a first session ended at 5-4 in favour of White (advantage sustained by breaks of 87, 53, 57 and 45), Williams knew he needed to seriously disturb some balls at returning for the last session.

Williams goes home
So he did, with a marvellous break of 90, break that made us remember why is his nickname "The Welsh Potting Machine". Sadly though, that was about everything that he could do, for White stormed in and with runs of 35, 65 and 72 got at 8-4 up.

Williams barely managed to pull back a frame and prologue the suspense, to which Michael responded with breaks of 90 and 96 for a clear 10-6 victory.

The Hawk lands on victory
Barry "The Hawk" Hawkins is also amongst those with a cosy and secured place in the next round, the 2021 Australian Goldfields Open champion beating Crucible debutant Jack Lisowski by 10-3.

Things were pretty clear from the first session, when although Jack had great contributions under the form of breaks like 82 and 100, Barry proved to be the better player and ended their first snooker encounter at 6-3.

Jack Lisowski is not a very happy bunny
During the last session, "The Hawk" launched his deadly attack from the very beginning, breaks of 68 and 26 bringing him closer to the finish-line, while runs of 40 and 20 put an end to Jack's misery at 10-3.



Last on the list, but surely not the least important one is Shaun Murphy, who got a pretty comfortable win of 10-5 over Martin Gould.

Their first encounter ended on a pretty balanced 5-4 scoreline (in favour of the Magician), but the second (and also the last one) was going to sadly put an end to Martin's dream of reaching the Last 16.

The Smurf  "magics'" his way into the Last 16
The 10th frame was a real test of endurance, for it lasted for almost an hour, Murphy managing to grab it, as well as the following one (which paradoxally enough lastest only 11 minutes), with a break fo 95 for a 7-4 lead.

A 78 was clearing Shaun's way towards victory, but Gould pulled one back just as the interval was kicking off and the scoreline became 8-5.

However, it didn't make much difference as at returning into the arena Murphy hit in runs of 106 and 95 to close the deal at 10-5.

Two more matches had their first session today, on the red corner Graeme Dott imposing a 6-2 lead over a pretty shaky Peter Ebdon, while on the blue corner Mark Davis got the best of a very vulnerable John Higgins, with a 6-3 scoreline.


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