World Championship 2018 – Day 11 – Ding and Allen in danger


Those are the scores as we enter the second and last day of the QF round.

And Ronnie is back in the studio alongside Colin Murray, Jimmy White and Mark Selby


2018 WSC: Ronnie at the studio (Eurosport, 01.05.2018.)

2018 WSC: Ronnie at the studio (Eurosport, 01.05.2018.)

2018 WSC: Ronnie at the studio (Eurosport, 01.05.2018.)

2018 WSC: Ronnie at the studio (Eurosport, 01.05.2018.)

2018 WSC: Ronnie at the studio (Eurosport, 01.05.2018.)

2018 WSC: Ronnie at the studio (Eurosport, 01.05.2018.)

So what do we do with yesterday’s outcome?

Ding was really poor against Barry Hawkins. Barry was rarely first in the balls but efficiently capitalised on his opponent mistakes. The ES pundits team, especially Mark and Ronnie, stressed that there was something fundamentally wrong in Ding’s attitude: as soon as things don’t go his way, he seems to give up. Ronnie suggested that Ding could benefit from seeing someone, just like himself has benefitted from seeing Steve Peters, as himself also in the past has been guilty of self-sabotaging when things were getting sticky. Both Ronnie and Mark agreed that if nothing changed the chances for Ding to ever become World Champion were close to zero. Ding played seemingly outstanding in the previous rounds and the truth is that he’s not been seriously tested. That said, Barry Hawkins in his quiet way has an outstanding record at the Crucible over the last 5 years. He should not be underestimated: he is playing well in winning this match.

It came to a surprise to me that after finishing the first session all square, Mark Allen lost the second session by 7-1. I don’t know how it happened, as I didn’t see it, but I was always expecting “The Warrior” to come into that match fired up and determined to “avenge” the Masters final defeat. Kyren must be on the warpath!

Judd Trump has a small advantage over John Higgins, starting the day 5-3 up. It could and should have been more. I’m a bit nonplussed that nobody seems to recognize that when John Higgins is put under pressure nowadays, he DOES miss more often than in the past. He was vulnerable yesterday and, once again, if Judd had played just a fraction more cautiously he could have easily been 6-2 up.

Finally Ali Carter and Mark Williams are all square and I couldn’t for the life of me pick a favourite there. Before the match “Willo” jokingly said that he may have to walk sideways to avoid a barge… but at the table both are playing it tough.

Speaking of “barges”, Ronnie explained this on ES yesterday

So, exactly as I initially understood, Ali started the whole thing by barging Ronnie first, but as usual, the media just ignored it, and only focused on Ronnie’s retaliation. Ronnie is taking it all with a good zest of humour…

Another interesting bit yesterday was the interview with Chris Henry on the impact of battle scars and how it works in the players brain. I’ll try to find a footage of that one.

And finally the pundits discussion around the future of the game and the importance of developing grassroot snooker. Hopefully the new World Snooker Federation will be up to the task.


5 thoughts on “World Championship 2018 – Day 11 – Ding and Allen in danger

  1. When Ronnie missed the blue to go 10-11, did Carter say something to him as he sat down?

  2. The writing was on the wall for Ding. Part of his problem is that these days his only focus was on the World Championship, and has been wandering through the season aimlessly. This has probably affected his edge, and he’s completely unable to raise his game when he needs to. Barry Hawkins has been steadiliy improving since Christmas, and has had two opponents who could test him, but not beat him.

    Ding’s baby is due in August, he may be hoping for some time off. But I don’t know how easy it is for him to duck out of the five Chinese events in the remainder of 2018. What he really needs is for some of the young Chinese players to break through and take some of the pressure off.

    I’ve said before that this season has been ‘brutal’ with the overcrowded schedule, and punishing things that some players have had to bear (on and off the table). This could be reflected in the World Champion we get at the end of it…

  3. Yes, he takes it with a good zest of humour, but I still sense here, as well as in Ronnie’s postmatch interview, a certain amount of feelings about the comments Carter made about the “Ronnie show”. Interesting also that Neil Robertson said in his interview thar Carter would play games with Ronnie’s mind. Carter was telling off everyone, starting with Dott and I am surprised all his rude comments passed under the radar.

    • That’s the media for you. They are only interested in things that sell and Carter doesn’t sell. That’s how eventually they give a biased image of the players. Every minor thing Ronnie does or say is controversy, another player does or says something similar or worse it goes unoticed most of the time. Allen is another one who is on their radar all the time.

  4. Thanks for that Monique, missed Eurosport yesterday. Thanks also for adding me to your email alerts.

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