Neil Robertson will take no further part in the Northern Ireland Open in Belfast after the UK champion suffered a surprise 4-1 defeat to Ricky Walden in the last 32 at the Waterfront Hall.
The world number four lost the opening frame to the three-times ranking event winner despite making a break of 55 before runs of 64 and 51 saw Walden move 3-0 clear and the cusp of the last 16.
- 'I'm going to make changes' – Robertson reveals plan to end world title drought
- Gods of Snooker: 'He made the sport what it is' – Rocket Ronnie on the magic of Hurricane Higgins
Northern Ireland Open
'I'm going to make changes' – Robertson reveals plan to end world title drought
Robertson prevented the whitewash with a timely 89, but the Englishman thwarted any ambition of a comeback by rolling in a 78 break to secure his progress.
Walden will face Jackson Page or Jack Lisowski in the last 16 on Thursday night as 2010 world champion Robertson flies back to his base in England to reflect upon his first competitive action of the new season ending in disappointment.
The Melbourne man has yet to go beyond the last 32 in Belfast in five appearances at the tournament, but will be keen for more extended success with the English Open breaking off (LIVE on Eurosport) on Monday 1 November.
There was better news for Antrim man Mark Allen at his home event as he eased past former world finalist Matthew Stevens 4-1 to reach the last 16, equalling his previous best run at the tournament.
Watch clearance from ‘toughest yellow since Thorburn in ‘83’ as Allen shows huge ‘bottle’ in 147 bid
Allen – who made the 170th 147 break in snooker history during a 4-1 win over Si Jiahui in the first round – lost the first frame, but quickly picked up the pace with knocks of 71 and 100 helping him secure a last-16 meeting with his close friend Stephen Maguire, who enjoyed a 4-2 victory over Liam Highfield boosted by breaks of 64, 51 and 79.
Ronnie O'Sullivan meets Masters champion Yan Bingtao in the last 16 on Thursday afternoon (LIVE on Eurosport) at 1pm with former world champions John Higgins and Mark Williams meeting later in the day.
- - -
Stream the Northern Ireland Open live and on demand on discovery+, the Eurosport app and eurosport.com.
Northern Ireland Open
Robertson crushes Xu, Murphy survives almighty scare
'My mind was so broken' - Walden fighting fit and looking to climb back up the rankings