The qualifiers for the 2022 European Masters continued yesterday and here is the report by WST:
Murphy Continues Strong Start
Shaun Murphy continued his strong start to the new season with a 5-3 win over Dean Young at BetVictor European Masters qualifying in Leicester.
The 2005 World Champion was plagued with back and neck problems last term but he is hopeful that those issues have lessened over the summer break. He started this season well by coming through his BetVictor Championship League group with two wins and a draw.
Murphy constructed contributions of 90, 55 and 68 on his way to this afternoon’s victory and he can now look forward to a trip to Furth for the final stages.
Scotland’s Anthony McGill edged past Switzerland’s Alexander Ursenbacher 5-4 in a keenly contested encounter. World number 16 McGill had trailed 4-3, but took the final two frames to edge through.
BetVictor Gibraltar Open champion Robert Milkins scored a 5-0 whitewash victory against Lu Ning. Andrew Higginson beat Joe O’Connor 5-2.
Barry Pinches recorded a 5-1 defeat of Rebecca Kenna with a top run of 138, while Mitchell Mann beat Mink Nutcharut by the same scoreline.
Mark Joyce top scored with 82 in a 5-0 whitewash of Stephen Hendry.
Probably the best matches of the day are not mentioned in this report, likely because their latish finish: Jak Jones beat Ben Woollaston by 5-3, in a match where both players scored 4 breaks over 50 and Jordan Brown beat Cao Yupeng by 5-4. Jordan was 4-2 up in that match, only for Cao to force a decider. Jordan scored 5 breaks over 50, including a 64 in the deciding frame, whilst Cao had 3 50+ breaks.
No mention either of Lei Peifan’s whitewash of Rod Lawler.
Andrew Higginson is far too good to be out of the main tour, and without the ranking points pressure he is out to do some damage. I wouldn’t be surprised if he requalified via the one year list come the end of the season.
Rebecca Kenna started playing better towards the end of her match. Later, on social media, she admitted to have felt very nervous, and to have struggled with the speed of the table. She is a fighter and a quick learner. I expect her to improve as the season advances.
As for the Mark Joyce v Stephen Hendry match … what can I say? Stephen does not seem to be willing to compromise on his style of play. I’m afraid this won’t get him anywhere for a number of reasons: his long potting is nowhere near as reliable it was when he was in his pomp, his tactical game, when he accepts that he has to play safe, isn’t good enough and the standard of the mid-ranked players is much, much higher than it used to in the 90th. I will never tell a player, never mind a great champion like Hendry, that they should retire. But this was painful to watch …
All detailed results are on snooker.org