2015 World Grand Prix (Day 3) - The wacky races to QFs

13:14:00 Ramona Dragomir 0 Comments

The wacky races (wacky as in crazy to be clear on that) from Cymru venue in Llandudno continued yesterday with more intensive snooker played almost on a non-stop mode. 

And for Clive Everton, our beloved commentator it surely seemed so, for the lads took their time into cruising towards the quarter-finals that start this Friday (Thursday we take a break).

After the early exit of Murphy and Higgins from the other day, the snooker Gods considered it was time to do the same with Neil Robertson and Mark Selby.

Neil Robertson faced His Majesty Mavis the Dark (also known as Mark Davis) in a very looooong cue-battle with a very looooong deciding frame (82-minutes of pure snooker).

Mark was the first one in and took the first frame, but Robbo was sure to equalise and fly at 3-1 up with runs of 44, 83 and 77.

Still, this wasn't too much of a bother for Dark Mavis who performed a very well-played comeback consisting in breaks of 81 and 53 to force the decider.

As I said before the last frame lasted around 82 minutes and its fate was decided by the last black. Because we needed more drama!

Robbo was the one with s slight advantage leading his opponent by 55-50, but when the black ball went in, it didn't matter for Davis was the one through. A though battle of nerves, but a genuine lesson of snooker under pressure, nonetheless.

Mark Selby, world number one and current world champion, also left the World Grand Prix after losing 4-2 to Martin "Gouldie" Gould.

Although the Leicester-man started with an 88 break to conquer the opening frame, it was Martin the one who flew at 3-1 up (a break of 49 and a beautiful 113 clearance helped the lad achieve his goal).

Selby kept the suspense after winning the 5th frame with a solid 84 break, but Gouldie ended his hopes with a well-cued 67 break for a place in the quarter-finals.

On Friday he will face "The Vegan Force" Peter Ebdon, as the 2002 world champion beat Stephen Maguire by an impressive 4-1 scoreline in a late match.

Ronnie O'Sullivan is also amongst those who will be putting his snooker cue into action, as the 5-time world champion recorded a crystal clear 4-0 victory over Robert Milkins, victory made reality through breaks of 72, 64 and 68.

At the end of the match things got a bit ugly as Ronnie had a go at the referee Marcel Eckardt for getting in his way around the table. Not the best picture one would like to see a snooker match finish with.

In the press conference, O'Sullivan said: "He probably cost me two or three centuries.
I think he needs to up his game or someone should show him where he should or shouldn't be.

"It was lucky the frame was over but it's still not the point - I'm out to entertain, to do a job and the crowd wants to see century breaks but if the referee keeps getting in my way and treading on my feet it doesn't help."

Despite all that (if it’s indeed true), I believe it was a bit unnecessary to play the "aggressive chimp card" (this is actually a reference to Dr Steve Peter's book, don't you start throw rocks at me!) on Marcel when everyone was looking. In my country we have a saying: "You don't wash your dirty laundry in public".

But on a brighter note, the story represents pure gold for the press (yellow or not) so probably that's all we'll hear/read the next couple of days.

On the opposite corner, a devastated Robert Milkins said on his Twitter account: “Certain matches I come off, and think wats (sic) the point, that was one of them; in fact every time against Ron! #useless # totalembarrassment!”

Young Master Judd Trump took on Joe Perry (the man whose 139 highest break he overcame with a perfect 140 one, a day before) in a genuine clash of style.

The lads went hand in hand up until 2-2, when Trump decided it was time to call it a day and book his place in the next round, helped by breaks of 57 and 69.

Mark Williams, "The World Seniors Champion" as he's now known to the public (still outrageous) recorded a very nice victory of 4-3 over Ricky Walden.

It was a close cue-crossing and the playes weren't separate by more than just a frame, in the end a break of 78 making all the difference and getting Mark Williams across the finish-line and into the quarter-finals.

Stuart Bingham is also sitting comfortably in the next round after beating Matthew Selt 4-2, as well as Graeme Dott who had to overcome the Chinese test of Liang Wenbo.

This one was quite a high quality match, for both players can be attacking and real fighters when they're in "the zone".  The final scoreline, 4-3 says it all.

So, Friday we return with the snooker madness for the quarter-finals of this year's World Grand Prix. The order of play is the following one:

Mark Davis v. Stuart Bingham

Martin Gould v. Peter Ebdon

Ronnie O'Sullivan v. Graeme Dott

Judd Trump v. Mark Williams

*all hours are UK time