2015 Welsh Open - Marching towards the QFs

12:28:00 Ramona Dragomir 0 Comments

The Motorpoint Arena
Yesterday saw the Last 16 players crossing their cues for a place in today's quarter-finals in a tournament that has turned out to be a genuine collection of upsets. 

Along the big names of Ronnie O'Sullivan, Shaun Murphy, Ding Junhui or Mark Allen, this year's Welsh Open will have to go on also without Mark Selby, Judd Trump and Neil Robertson.

Current world number one and the world champion, Mark Selby set a dangerous meeting with Belgium's best Luca Brecel.

Luca lands in QFs
Despite the fact that Selby was the first in, opening with a magnificent 131 total clearance to which he soon added runs of 31 and 42 to fly at 2-0 up, Brecel didn't give in. Breaks of 41 and 42 were bringing the balance on the scoreboard and this was game on!

No surprise to see "The Jester" hitting another century break, this time a 114, to regain control of the match, but the same can be said about his Belgian opponent who used a great 101 break to make the scoreline go 3-3. DECIDER!

The last frame was Luca's chance to prove he can win under pressure against a player that holds the world champion crown. And he did it with runs of 33 and 27 for a beautiful victory of 4-3.

Jester's journey ends here
At the next table, John Higgins and Michael Georgiou were disputing a pretty tense Last16 match, the first frame lasting for almost 40 minutes and ending on the black (which John potted).

The lads went hand-in-hand up until 2-2, when the Scotsman took off with breaks like 38, 38 and 36 to cross over the victory-line with a 4-2 score.

A few hours later another upset was to go into the thick books of snooker's history as Judd Trump lost by 4-1 in front of local hero Mark Williams.

An early missed red from Trump opened the way for Williams' 68 break which brought him the first frame, followed by two more (a collection of mini-breaks of 28, 34 and 24 were part of the winning package) for a 3-0 scoreline.

Local hero Mark Williams in action
The forth frame saw its fate decided by the last black, although Mark had the chance to end businesses earlier in that frame, Trump sinking it in one of the pockets to win his first frame of the match.

Unfortunately for him though, it was going to be his first and last frame, for Williams used runs of 29 and 56 to secure a cosy spot in the quarter-finals.

Ben Woollaston is also amongst those with a chance to win the trophy as he beat "Captain" Ali Carter by 4-2 by using a myriad of breaks (65, 103, 108, 38 and 51).

Gary Wilson records a very important victory
The same scoreline was registered also between Marco Fu and Welshman Matthew Stevens who sees his chance to retain some silverware crushed, while Scotland's Stephen Maguire is set to meet fellow country-man John Higgins in the next round after whitewashing another country-man, Alan McManus by 4-0.

Late in the night, another Top 16 player and world champion was making an exit from the competition. Neil Robertson lost by 4-2 in front of Gary Wilson.

The match had an edgy start, but Robertson soon got into potting the balls. However, he did miss an important red down on 40, this leaving the road clear for Gary and his 50 break which brought him the opener.

Aussie's out
Neil used runs of 30 and 41 to go 2-1 up, but Wilson forced his way back into the match with a brilliant 81 and won the 5th frame after his opponent tried to lay a clever safety shot and missed three times, thus granting him a frame on a silver plate.

Wilson ended the snooker business quite quickly afterwards, a break of 53 proving enough for a place in the quarter-finals.

Also in the quarter-finals we have Ricky Walden, who beat Stuart Bingham 4-2 using top breaks of 79 and 93.

So, without  any further ado, here is today's match schedule:

12:00 John Higgins v. Stephen Maguire
13:00 Marco Fu v. Mark Williams
19:00 Ricky Walden v. Luca Brecel
19:00 Ben Woollaston v. Gary Wilson