The trend set on the previous days continued, with the highest seeds going through in the vast majority of matches. There were no real surprises yesterday.
Kyren Wilson trailed rookie Brandon Sargeant by 2-0, but eventually won by 6-4. The key in this match, as in so many other matches we have seen this week was the safety game. Most players, freshly emerging from the amateur scene, are way behind the top pros in that department. Kyren’s highest break in the match was 63, Brandon’s was 107. On many occasions Brandon was ahead in the frames but Kyren got him in knots and eventually snatched them. That same pattern probably applies to some of the other matches involving debutants, played this week.
Stephen Maguire made light work of Jamie O’Neill’s challenge: he scored 51, 60, 129, 50, 61, 86 and 108 in a true demolition of his opponent. That probably was the performance of the day.
The highlight however was Tom Ford’s 147, his fourth, and the first of the new season:
2019 International Championship: Tom Ford 147 – Fraser Patrick
The surprise of the day for me was the 6-2 demolition of Fergal O’Brien by Nigel Bond in a battle of veterans. Somehow I expected Fergal to win this one. The match was quick too, it lasted only about 2 1/2 hours with both players seemingly playing at a good pace.