Snooker was back yesterday with the 2021 English Open qualiers. Eurosport player and Matchroom.live both showed all the matches, which is great.
Zhou Yuelong and Zhang Jiankang have been withdrawn from BetVictor English Open qualifying due to being close contacts of a Covid-19 case.
Both players are to be replaced in the draw by the next available players in the Q School Order of Merit. Ross Muir will replace Zhou to face Dean Young this afternoon at 4pm.
Zhang’s replacement to face Jak Jones tomorrow at 1pm remains TBC and will be named as soon as possible.
Bai Langning is replacing Zhang.
Hallworth Fightback Floors Craigie
World number 70 Steven Hallworth claimed the last three frames to secure a dramatic 4-3 win over Sam Craigie and earn his place in the final stages of the BetVictor English Open.
Victory for Hallworth books a spot at the Marshall Arena in Milton Keynes next month for the final stages. Qualifying for the event is taking place over the next few days in Barnsley.
Hallworth fired in the highest break of the match, a run of 83, on his way to setting up the decider. He then held his nerve to secure a 37-minute final frame and seal his progression.
Jimmy Robertson eased to an impressive 4-0 win over China’s Yuan Sijun. Bexhill’s Robertson was in fine break building form throughout the tie, composing runs of 53, 56 and 108.
World number 24 Tom Ford eased through with a 4-0 whitewash win against Sean Maddocks. Leicester’s Ford made breaks of 61,106 on his way to victory.
Alexander Ursenbacher sealed his place in Milton Keynes with a 4-2 defeat of former English Amateur champion Ben Hancorn. Swiss number one Ursenbacher compiled a break of 111 in the opening frame and added further breaks of 57 and 54.
Chinese teenager Wu Yize held off an Ashley Hugill fightback to progress 4-3, while his compatriot Xiao Guodong defeated Alfie Burden 4-2.
Oh my! That picture of Steven there is not quite up-to-date …
Yuan Sijun looked both out-of-sorts and quite dispirited out there. His game has disintegrated over the last couple of seasons and it’s sad to see really. Jimmy Robertson played well, but he didn’t have much opposition.
The match between Wu Yize and Ashley Hugill was an interesting one. It was hard fought, quality, and quite tactical. Wu showed maturity beyond his years; he’s only 17 and matched Ashley in the safety department. He seemed to have lost his way a bit after a bad miss in frame 5, but eventually managed to win the deciding frame. That last frame was a long one. You could clearly feel the tension and both players made unexpected mistakes. At one point Ashley Hugill took several minutes pondering over a shot. He was warned – quite firmly – by Olivier Marteel after playing it. I’m not sure what Olivier said but Ashley looked distraught. On a lighter note … I quite like Wu’s mullet. Somehow reminded me of Hendry in the early 90th.
Tom Ford won easily without playing particularly well.