2021 British Open – Day 5 – Last 32 and Last 16

Yesterday was the British Open equivalent of the Home Nations’ “Moving Day” with two rounds – last 32 and last 16 – played to a completion.

These are yesterday’s “highlights”

  • Elliot Slessor defeated Judd Trump in the last 32, and then Ali Carter in the last 16.
  • As a result of Judd Trump’s last 32 exit, Mark Selby will regain the World number one spot at the end of this tournament, despite bowing out in the lat 64.
  • Ali Carter made a maximum, his third, in the second frame of his last 16 match against Slessor. Quite remarkably, each time Ali has made a maximum, there has been another one in the same competition and he had to share the “maximum bonus” each time, This time it’s with John Higgins.
  • Jimmy Robertson played really well to beat Stephen Maguire in the last 16.
  • Mark Williams is the only member of the top 16 still in the tournament and he was “lucky” to come out the winner of his last 16 match against Zhang Jiankang. Zhang should have won the match, but inexperience of playing at such stage on the main table and pressure got at him.
  • Zhou Yuelong beat Joe O’Connor by 3-2 in a very hard fought match. Joe was the last player from Leicester still standing and, probably, for a short while, Zhou became the most hated player in Leicester on that evening.
  • Lukas Kleckers became the first German player to reach the last 16 of a full ranking event, but lost to Lu Ning at that stage.

Here is the “main” report by WST:

Slessor Reaches Quarters

World number 49 Elliot Slessor is into the quarter-finals after claiming two huge scalps in a day of giant killing at the matchroom.live British Open in Leicester.

Following a superb 3-2 defeat of Judd Trump in the afternoon, Slessor took on four-time ranking event winner Ali Carter in what proved to be a high quality encounter. Slessor defeated the Captain 3-1, but not before an evening of fireworks.

The opening frame went the way of Slessor thanks to a break of 76. What followed was a moment of snooker magic. Carter restored parity with the perfect frame, firing in the third 147 break of his career to make it 1-1. It’s the second maximum break of the week, following John Higgins’ effort in the opening round against Alexander Ursenbacher.

That did nothing to deter the Gateshead’s Slessor, who fired in runs of 74 and 63 to seal a significant victory. Next up Slessor faces Zhou Yuelong, who defeated Leicester’s Joe O’Connor 3-2.

“It was a good game and we both played pretty well. We barely made any mistakes at all,” said 27-year-old Slessor. “I’ve been working with Peter Ebdon to try and be more mentally strong in certain situations. I made a monster clearance after he made the 147. I thought if I could nick that frame I’d take the momentum. In this kind of game momentum is everything.

“I’ve always known I have ability. I can score, I can play safe, I can pot balls. The biggest problem I’ve always had is me. My attitude and me in general. I’ve ended up missing chances because I’m so annoyed at myself. What I’m doing now is a completely different outlook and I’m feeling really strong and comfortable.”

World number 11 Mark Williams is the only top 16 player left standing, after he defeated China’s Zhang Jiankang 3-2. The three-time World Champion will now face Ricky Walden in an intriguing quarter-final clash. Walden beat amateur Ross Muir 3-1 in his last 16 tie.

David Gilbert continued his hot streak of form with a 3-0 whitewash win over Hammad Miah. The Tamworth cueman won his maiden ranking title at the Championship League last week.

Gilbert composed breaks of 60 and 62 on his way to this evening’s victory. He now faces Gary Wilson who defeated Hossein Vafaei 3-2 to make the quarter-finals.

Former European Masters winner Jimmy Robertson clinched a quarter-final berth with a 3-0 defeat of Stephen Maguire. He now faces Lu Ning, who defeated Lukas Kleckers 3-0. Kleckers leaves Leicester with the consolation of becoming the first German ever to reach the last 16 of a ranking event.

and the “program” for today:

Afternoon session: Quarter-finals:

QF1: Lu Ning v Jimmy Robertson

QF2: Zhou Yuelong v Elliot Slessor

QF3: Mark Williams v Ricky Walden

QF4: David Gilbert v Gary Wilson

Evening session: Semi-finals

QF1 v QF3

QF2 v QF4

One thought on “2021 British Open – Day 5 – Last 32 and Last 16

  1. Hopefully that choke against Mark Williams won’t wreck Zhang Jiankang’s confidence after returning from the wilderness. He’s improved his technique a lot, but still suffers the occasional lapse. The lost £5000 could be critical in 18 months’ time.

    The line-up is an unfamiliar one, but not so surprising. It’s a combination of best-of-5’s, random draws and terrible table conditions. But also it’s a recognition that for many players the season hasn’t really started. Perhaps the Northern Ireland Open in mid-October?

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