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Robertson knocked out of English Open by Zhao Xintong

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SHANGHAI, CHINA - SEPTEMBER 14: Neil Robertson of Australia reacts in the semi-final match against Ronnie O'Sullivan of England on day 6 of World Snooker Shanghai Masters 2019 at Regal International East Asia Hotel on September 14, 2019 in Shanghai, China

Image credit: Getty Images

ByJames Gray
17/10/2019 at 13:54 | Updated 17/10/2019 at 16:06

Neil Robertson became the second top-five player of the week to be knocked out of English Open when he was beaten 4-0 by Zhao Xintong.

Robertson had been made to work for his place in the third round by Marco Fu, whom he beat for the loss of two frames but made a breaks of 100, 75, 50 and 49 to suggest he was worthy of his place among the favourites in Crawley.

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But the Australian was slow out of the blocks against World No 52 Zhao, the 22-year-old of whom great things are expected.

The Chinese player produced highest breaks of 68 and 71 to whitewash the former world champion, who has never made it past the quarter-finals of the English Open.

Robertson, who was followed out of the tournament by world No 1 Judd Trump just a few minutes later, was frustrated by his own failure to adapt to a table that did not play how he expected or wanted it to.

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"It was very tough. At this stage of the Home Nations events, you get enough top players that some of us have to go on the outside tables and I think Xhao handled the conditions much better than I did," Robertson said.

"It's frustrating but you have to accept it for what it is. If you are world champion or world No 1, you're going to get priority on the tables and my session fell on the exact same time as Judd. It was really tough to adjust to.

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"I ran out of position three or four times in the match when I wouldn't usually otherwise and I lost a couple of frames on the black which I should never have lost."

Zhao will now play David Gilbert later this evening for a place in only his third-ever ranking tournament quarter-final.

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