World Championship 2018 – Day 7 – Allen in the QF, Ronnie still fighting, Lyu HaoTian impressive.


Mark Allen produced a blistering performance in the third session of his last 16 match to become the first man through the Quarter Finals.

Lyu HaoTian was 8-3 down to Barry Hawkins at a point, but finished the second session only 9-7 down. He duly impressed the BBC pundits, Steve Davis and Ken Doherty. Both also stressed how much the environment provided by Vic Snooker Academy has been beneficial to the young Chinese players on the tour in recent seasons.

Ronnie really struggled against Ali Carter yesterday. Ali played very impressively for most of the two sessions, Ronnie was far from his best. After finishing the first session 5-3 ahead, Ali won the first three of the second session to lead 8-3. But Ronnie, still not playing great, managed to win four of the last five to trail only by 9-7.  During that “comeback” Ali Carter refused to look at the table and at the end stormed out of the arena without shaking the referee’s hand. Not sure that’s a clever message to send to your opponent under the circumstances.

Here are the reports on Worldsnooker

Morning Session

Ali Carter came out on top in the opening session of his second round clash with Ronnie O’Sullivan to establish a 5-3 advantage at the Betfred World Championship.

The signs looked ominous for the Captain heading into this one. O’Sullivan is riding the crest of a wave, having claimed five ranking titles in a single season for the first time in his career. He has also never lost to Carter and holds a 13-0 head-to-head record.

This is the fifth time the Essex duo have met at the Crucible, that includes two world finals, where O’Sullivan picked up the third and fourth of his five world crowns, in 2008 and 2012 respectively.

It was world number 15 Carter who hit the ground running this morning, taking the opening frame. The Rocket emphatically responded, firing in a break of 121 to restore parity. They then traded frames and went into the mid-session level at 2-2.

When they returned Carter took back the lead in style, compiling a century run of 115 to go 3-2 up. O’Sullivan hit back with a break of 96, but it was the Captain who claimed the final two of the session to seal his 5-3 lead. They will return this evening at 7pm for the second of three sessions.

Mark Allen and Joe Perry are locked together at 8-8 after a fiercely contested second session of their last 16 clash.

Neither player is short on confidence on snooker’s biggest stage. Masters champion Allen picked up his maiden Triple Crown title at Alexandra Palace in January. While Perry inflicted defending champion Mark Selby’s first Crucible defeat since 2015 in his first round clash.

They resumed with Allen holding a 5-3 lead after the first session. Perry played some fine snooker this morning to claw his way back into the match. The Gentleman composed century breaks of 105 and 120 as he took five out of the eight frames, including the last two of the session, to ensure a grandstand finish when they conclude this evening at 7pm.

Evening Session

Mark Allen emphatically surged to a 13-8 defeat of Joe Perry to book a quarter-final place at the Betfred World Championship.

The pair came into this evening’s session with the tie finely poised at 8-8 and many would have predicted a late night battle, but as it transpired Allen swept up all five frames to ease to the finish line.

The victory sees Antrim’s Allen reach the quarter-final stage at the World Championship for the first time in seven years. The result is in stark contrast to the Pistol’s last 16 clash in 2017, which saw Allen ousted 13-9 against John Higgins, despite putting on an inspired display and firing in four centuries.

Allen composed breaks of 133, 74 and 122 this evening to brush Perry aside. The 32-year-old now faces either Kyren Wilson or Jamie Jones, as he attempts to secure a passage to the semi-finals and the one-table setup for only the second time after his initial run to the last four in 2009.

The Masters champion will head into the last eight in confident mood after claiming his first ever Triple Crown title with victory at Alexandra Palace in January.

Perry leaves disappointed after fading away this evening. However, he will be able to reflect on an event which saw him qualify for the Crucible for the first time in two years. The Gentleman also made a big impact in round one, inflicting defending champion Mark Selby’s first defeat at the Crucible since 2015.

“I felt like I needed to go for more shots, my game is about potting the long ones and scoring. I was aggressive this evening, but I was sensible. I turned down a few pots to keep him tight when he was 40 or 50 down in frames. Apart from one missed blue, I played perfect snooker for five frames tonight,” said the three-time ranking event winner. “This is the World Championship at the end of the day and you’re not going to have any matches handed to you, so I’m very happy with the way I closed it out.”

Perry said: “I’ve proved to myself that on my day I’m good enough to beat anybody. Unfortunately, inconsistency is probably what’s stopped me winning more trophies in my career. Every now and then I throw in one of these bad performances and fall short. I know that when it all comes together, I’m good enough to beat anybody and maybe win a tournament. I’ve got to take that and just keep working. Hopefully I’ll have another one of those dream days somewhere down the line.”

Ali Carter will take a 9-7 lead into the concluding session of his second round clash with five-time World Champion Ronnie O’Sullivan.

The Captain has never defeated O’Sullivan and trails the head-to-head record 13-0, including two world final losses.

Carter had looked as if he was going to establish a big advantage when he lead 8-3. However, the Rocket claimed four of the remaining five frames, including breaks of 79 and 105 as he moved within two at 9-7. They will play to a conclusion tomorrow at 2:30pm.

When Ronnie and Ali resume their match today, playing to a finish, you feel that Ronnie will need to play better than he did until now to get through. Whether he will be able to do that remains to be seen. It would of course be a disappointing end of an otherwise brilliant season if his run in the World Championship was to end in the last 16. But we should all remember that there are things in life much more important than a match of snooker as this article by Hector Nunns in the Express timely reminds us.

Good luck Ronnie, go Jack! 

One thought on “World Championship 2018 – Day 7 – Allen in the QF, Ronnie still fighting, Lyu HaoTian impressive.

  1. Ronnie needs to play better and needs to start this better play immediately when the session starts, not after he lost a few frames. So fingers crossed and the best of luck.

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