World Championship snooker 2021 LIVE - Stuart Bingham, John Higgins and Jack Lisowski all in action
World Championship snooker 2021 – Welcome to LIVE coverage from the big one. Ronnie O'Sullivan won on Saturday, Neil Robertson sealed his progression on Sunday and Stuart Bingham, John Higgins and Jack Lisowski are all in action today. Plus, last year's beaten finalist against O'Sullivan, Kyren Wilson, is taking on Gary Wilson.
We've had a glimpse today of why many people think Kyren will win the world title, if not this year then certainly soon. His game has the combination of temperament, courage, belief and grit that is perfect for the long haul slog that is the World Snooker Championship. At 5-1 down it's very easy to not give a flying one and slide listlessly to a thumping, but Kyren dragged himself back into it with some pure, match play snooker and held off Gary who tried to mount a late comeback of his own at the end. He was the finalist last year, and has been in the last eight in each of the last five World Championships; without a doubt Kyren is the coming player in the game, and will be a formidable opponent as these matches get longer. One of Barry Hawkins and Matthew Selt will take him on in the second round.
Kyren 10-8 Gary
The Wilson-off is over, Kyren takes frame and match with a break of 73.
Kyren 9-8 Gary (63-0)
Another blue goes down, and the break moves to 62 with only 59 left on. Kyren then clatters a red into the bottom left from a tight angle, and we're done here.
Kyren 9-8 Gary (51-0)
Kyren is very methodically picking these off. He's having to go up for the blue, with the black currently tied up and the pink on the brown spot, but he's getting the mileage and position from the cue ball. He survives an accidental kiss on a red with the white with a blue to left middle to reach his half-century, and then middles a red into the bottom right to come back up for the blue. This is an absorbing break.
Kyren 9-8 Gary (20-0)
A chance for frame and match? Kyren glides a long red into the bottom left, and he's on the green. There's a few nervy shots early doors, but a superb red to the bottom right with the rest gets him on the pink, and he's on 20 and counting.
Kyren 9-8 Gary
A black to the bottom left wobbles furiously but drops, ringing in a half-century for Gary. Frame ball red into the same pocket soon disappears too, followed by the blue, and that'll do us. Kyren is one up with two to play.
Kyren 9-7 Gary (16-29)
Well, well, Kyren misses a shot with the rest! He can't jam the green into its own pocket, and it's a chance for Gary. The black is tied up but Gary soon shifts the offending red away from it, before cutting the black deadweight into the bottom left. That's an excellent shot, and it's all on for him now.
Kyren 9-7 Gary (1-9)
Kyren slides in a long red at the start of the 17th, but slides just past the baulk colours on his way back up the table and the chance disappears. Now we'll see what Gary's got left; he blams a red into the bottom left from distance and lands on the yellow. Pink and black are out of commission for the moment but the reds are nicely spread, if he can keep landing north of the blue spot. It breaks down on nine though, and he's left Kyren on a red.
Kyren 9-7 Gary
He's got two of them, with the black for insurance off the back of the second. With the pressure off, he empties the whole table for a 119, and needs just one more frame for victory.
Kyren 8-7 Gary (54-10)
It's a half-ton in no time, and the whole frame is on here with five reds left on the table. If Kyren gets two of them, we should be done in this one.
Kyren 8-7 Gary (15-10)
Tit for tat this, as Gary comes back at the beginning of the 16th frame with a red delicately dropped into the left middle. He can only make ten though before ending up trapped in the pack after trying to nudge them apart, and it's end of break. A safety battle follows, and Gary catches one too thick and leaves a red to the left middle. Kyren quickly moves in to the lead, and there's a lot to go at here.
Kyren 8-7 Gary
The last red is frame ball, and Kyren rolls it into the bottom right using the rest. Is there anyone better in the game with that implement? A 58 in total gives Kyren the advantage.
On our other table John Higgins and Tian Pengfei have resumed their game, Higgins firing in a 135 to take the frame he needed to win 10-7.
Kyren 7-7 Gary (32-29)
Kyren makes 13 before losing position, but quickly gets another chance and smashes a red into the bottom left to go up for the blue. He deposits said ball superbly into the bottom left, and Gary's lead soon disappears. A nice pot on the pink nudges four adjacent reds into better positions, and this is a real chance to win the frame at this visit.
Kyren 7-7 Gary (0-29)
An early chance for Gary, as Kyren misses a long one to the bottom right and leaves an easy red to the right middle. He scoops up 29, but misses a black off its spot as he tries to crack the pack open off it. There's nothing easy for Kyren though who misses a long red into the green pocket. A safety battle follows, from which Gary coughs a red up over the left middle and Kyren is in.
Kyren 7-7 Gary
Gary gets the yellow down, thin into the left middle, and clears up to the pink. This is a great response from him; we're level, and it's now best of five.
Kyren 7-6 Gary (28-56)
Gary inadvertently pots the black, and it's seven away. He's in next with a solitary red though, and gets a golden chance a few shots later when a poor safety from Kyren leaves him on a red in the jaws of the bottom right. Gary takes the mop to what's in the open, sweeping up 40,and he's got the last awkward red into the open now with a clever shot to nudge it over the right middle. This is a great effort, and he's favourite for this one now. A total of 54 leaves him 28 ahead with just the colours left, as Kyren comes back to the table.
On our other table Anthony McGill has beaten Ricky Walden 10-5, and will play Ronnie O'Sullivan in the second round.
Kyren 7-6 Gary (20-1)
We're back, and Kyren's in with a red to the left middle. An attacking shot on the brown, coming off one cushion to split the pack, leaves him a red to the bottom right from where he scatters the pack again. He's not on a colour though, and has to play safe; Gary fires back by converting a thin cut on a red, and then welding the white to the top cushion for Kyren.
Kyren 7-6 Gary
A 71 from Gary pegs a frame back. In any other tournament on the tour, losing six on the bike at this stage will have you on your way home; such is the beauty of the long haul format in Sheffield, we've still got a match on when we return and it's anyone's. See you in 15.
Kyren 7-5 Gary (1-53)
It's a half-century for Gary, who has taken these smoothly; it's a great show of moxie after losing six on the spin. There are enough reds in the open to bank this frame in one visit and stop the rot.
Kyren 7-5 Gary (1-15)
Kyren thunders in a long red at the start of the 13th, but can't add to it. Gary gets the second chance of the frame, stunning in a red along the top rail and into the yellow pocket, and he's now down at the business end of the table. This is the final frame before the mid-session interval, and it feels imperative for Gary that he nicks it.
On our other table, Anthony McGill leads Ricky Walden 8-5.
Kyren 7-5 Gary
Gary makes a decent fist of it at the start, but on 22 he catches the penultimate red on the bottom rail all wrong and leaves it hanging over the bottom left. Red-blue follows for Kyren, Gary goes in-off soon after and we're done in the 12th frame.
Kyren 6-5 Gary (64-0)
Kyren's break curtails on 37 as he runs out of position. Gary tries a difficult red into the right middle to get going, from a position close to the bottom cushion, and misses it high on the knuckle. Kyren mops up a loose red in response, and piles on another 27, but he can't cut frame ball red into the bottom right. Gary's still in it with 67 still on the table.
Kyren 6-5 Gary (18-0)
All the momentum is with Kyren right now. He's in again, and a superb split off the pack, off two cushions after potting the blue, is followed by a long red right into the heart of the yellow pocket. He looks really locked in to what he's doing out there tonight.
Kyren 6-5 Gary
Kyren mops up a red-blue, and we're done. From 5-1 down, he's now in the lead!
Kyren 5-5 Gary (61-12)
It's a half-ton for Kyren, who has nudged into position one red that he needs to leave Gary needing snookers. He rolls it across the table and into the right middle; fantastic stuff from the Warrior. The green follows for insurance and Gary returns with two snookers needed.
Kyren 5-5 Gary (29-12)
Gary serves up another easy starter for Kyren, and this one could be more costly. There's 28 and counting up already, but with three awkward reds near the left rail Gary still has a decent chance of coming back to the table in a position where he can win without snookers.
Kyren 5-5 Gary (1-12)
Kyren goes all out on a long red at the start of the 11th. It rattles but doesn't drop, but he'd committed to staying at the south of the table and there's a real chance for Gary now. He's lost four frames in a row, and badly needs a decent knock here. On 12 though he leaves a red hanging in the jaws of the yellow pocket, and Kyren's in again, but he then misses a shocker of a green to hand the initiative back.
Kyren 5-5 Gary
That's a brilliant clearance from Kyren, who nicks the frame with a nerveless 61.
Kyren 4-5 Gary (41-53)
This is some effort from Kyren, who has shifted two awkward reds off cushions and chiselled down Gary's lead with the colours to go. He needs up to and including the pink.
Kyren 4-5 Gary (0-53)
We're into a prolonged safety exchange here. A miss from Kyren sends four Gary's way, and he then sticks a red up over the bottom left to boot. It's only red-brown for Gary though, who misses the next red from mid-range into the bottom left. He's had some chances in this frame; here's one for Kyren.
Kyren 4-5 Gary (0-44)
Gary's in again with a long red across the table, and this chance looks like sticking. He piles on another 27, but just as he's looking good a complete miscue on a simple black brings his break juddering to a halt. Luckily enough, he's left nish for Kyren.
Kyren 4-5 Gary (0-17)
Gary gets away first, clanking a long red into the bottom left, followed by a black but no more. He’s soon served up another chance though as Kyren misses a red to the bottom right and leaves it there. This is a good chance now, as there are reds all over and the black is on to both corners. Gary can only make another nine though before losing position again and having to play safe.
Here we go
The players are out, and we're ready to go. Football might be eating itself today, but we've got guaranteed, healthy competition at the Crucible tonight. First to ten it is for a place in the second round.
Wilson versus Wilson
Ooh, is that a landmark legal case you ask? Hell no, something far more interesting; it’s Kyren versus Gary for a place in the second round of the worlds, and it's our featured match tonight. Gary edged ahead in the morning session, and we’ll see it through to a conclusion tonight. We’ll also keep you updated on the happenings from our other table, where Anthony McGill and Ricky Walden are playing for the right to face Ronnie O’Sullivan in the last 16.
Welcome to live coverage of the evening session of day two of the 2021 World Snooker Championship from the Crucible Theatre, Sheffield.
Boys will be baized shortly.
SEE YOU SHORTLY
Join us again just before 19.00 BST for more snooker! Anthony McGill leads Ricky Walden 5-4 while it’s the same scoreline in the battle of the Wilson boys as Gary has the slight advantage over last year’s finalist, Kyren. Don’t miss those encounters – or the conclusion of Higgins v Tian.
HIGGINS 9-7 TIAN
Wow. Higgins somehow makes it five on the spin with a wonderful, maiden century - it's his highest of the match by some distance! It's timely form but only Tian knows how this one has slipped away. They will return later this evening to conclude what has been an epic. Higgins only needs one frame. Tian needs a sensational comeback now after being in charge for so much of the match.
HIGGINS 8-7 TIAN (75-60)
A cunning snooker from Higgins sees Tian foul three times trying to clip the final red. The Chinese star finally hits it at the fourth attempt but leaves it on via the yellow pocket. Higgins slots it away and moves through the gears to take the pink he needs and claim a fourth frame in a row. He somehow has the lead despite a below-par showing throughout this match.
HIGGINS 7-7 TIAN (35-60)
Good work from Higgins gets him back into it with a break of 23. There’s some clever safety play from both of them but a double-kiss off a missed red from Tian gives the Scot real hope of snatching this frame.
HIGGINS 7-7 TIAN (0-60)
It’s just the seven for Tian. Higgins is 60 behind with 67 remaining but a few of the reds remaining are far from routine.
HIGGINS 7-7 TIAN (0-53)
Tian has another chance to regain control and produces assured potting before blowing a make-able pink. Higgins lets him off the hook with another shocker on a simple red and the Chinese has a third opening here.
HIGGINS 7-7 TIAN (0-33)
All eyes are firmly fixed on Tian as he lines up a long red to the bottom right corner. He’s seen a big lead flitter away, but seems to have reset as he absolutely thumps it into the pocket. A break of 33 follows and he’s unlucky with a ricochet into the pack of reds that offers nothing for him to continue his push to reassert his authority in the match.
HIGGINS 7-7 TIAN (72-51)
That’s a shocker from both players but it’s Higgins who eventually prevails to claim a third frame in a row. All square!
HIGGINS 6-7 TIAN (52-51)
There's only one conclusion here: no-one wants to win this frame without putting themselves through the mill. Tian has a two-frame lead in his sights but blows a simple yellow and trudges to his seat with a break of 39 under his belt that he should have definitely added to.
HIGGINS 6-7 TIAN (52-12)
Both players' nerves must be jangling away. Tian’s game has gone AWOL and he needs to find it again fast. Higgins has made two errors that you’d expect to be punished but he gets yet another chance to level it. A break of 30 puts him in control but he can’t find the thin cut on a red to the bottom left pocket with the rest.
HIGGINS 6-7 TIAN (66-29)
So, it appears the real John Higgins has entered the building. The four-time champion takes full of advantage of some well-positioned reds to claim a solid break of 61. Tian needs snookers and just bashes the balls hopefully and you wonder why he didn’t just concede when he does that. Higgins returns to pot the yellow and green and move within one frame of the world number 53.
HIGGINS 5-7 TIAN (0-29)
Just when you thought we were all set for a routine frame and big break. Tian over-thinks position while trying to pot a black to the bottom right pocket and comes unstuck.
HIGGINS 5-7 TIAN (73-34)
It’s mini breaks galore with both players wasting chances to take charge. Tian may rue a lack of composure to really pile the pressure on Higgins. He doesn’t do so and the Scot sinks a sumptuous yellow via a double to the middle right pocket before returning to the table to put finally put a frame lasting over 30 minutes to bed.
HIGGINS 4-7 TIAN (30-26)
It’s a catalogue of errors out there. Tian sizzles a lovely red into the bottom left corner but can only watch on in frustration as the white wanders back up the table and clips the green in. On a normal day that would be curtains for the Chinese underdog, but Higgins’ A-game is still in his suitcase. This is a HUGE frame too. Who is going to find their nerve to claim it?
HIGGINS 4-7 TIAN (20-9)
Yet another foul from Higgins. He’s so far off his best form that this really is a gilt-edged opportunity for Tian to claim a big scalp. However, a poor, almost kamikaze, shot from the Chinese allows the Scot to lay the foundations for a frame-clinching break. He doesn’t do it and a red he usually makes in his sleep clips another and misses the bottom left pocket.
Pengfei Tian in seiner WM-Partie gegen John Higgins
Image credit: Eurosport
HIGGINS 4-7 TIAN (0-5)
More loose safety from Higgins and Tian steps up to bullet a long red into the bottom right pocket. He re-focuses himself following a disturbance in the crowd but when it happens again he can’t make a difficult blue to the green pocket. Higgins doesn't take advantage as he misses with the rest and bows his head in dismay. Tian can’t make much headway though and it’s a pretty scrappy start following the interval.
HIGGINS 4-7 TIAN (17-72)
More disappointment for Higgins. A break of 16 ends when a double on a red into the centre right somehow wriggles free. There’s a brief exchange of shots to try and gain the ascendancy before Tian sneaks 10 to leave the number five seed needing three snookers. Tian corks a red to the green pocket and that'll do us heading into the mid-session interval.
HIGGINS 4-6 TIAN (1-61)
What is going on with John Higgins? There’s an adventurous plant on the cards but the Scot eventually dismisses it and somehow contrives to foul playing a more defensive strategy going for a red off the bottom cushion. Tian accepts the gift and produces some sublime shot-making to drag the cue ball back into position when a fine break looked in jeopardy. He makes 57 but can’t get himself over the line and allows Higgins back in. Can the four-time champ pull it out of the hat after what looked like being another torrid start to a session?
HIGGINS 4-6 TIAN (72-20)
Tian makes 16 and then looks for one of the snookers. Higgins handles it comfortably and then stylishly doubles one of the two remaining reds into the middle right pocket. He doesn’t follow it up but Tian nods to concede the frame and the Scot reduces the gap.
HIGGINS 3-6 TIAN (71-4)
Higgins recovers from an early foul to beautifully clip a red into the right centre pocket. Again he looks firmly in control but the cue ball rolls into the pack of reds and he needs to play another audacious cut into the bottom left to stay at the table. He has the frame in his hands but a sloppy miss on the black means he takes a seat with a break of 71 when a century looked on. Tian will continue but needs snookers just to tie.
HIGGINS 3-6 TIAN (40-66)
Tian takes full advantage of Higgins’ wretched luck with some astute potting. It’s far from easy for the Chinese hopeful but he takes care of some awkward reds before missing the brown to fully make sure. Higgins wants to carry on but needs a couple of snookers. He ends up potting the brown and making life difficult for himself on the blue. He decides against pursuing what feels like a lost cause and is now three frames down. Not the start he was anticipating.
HIGGINS 3-5 TIAN (36-5)
Is it going to be one of those days for Higgins? He plays some lovely stuff to make a break of 36. He cannons off a blue pot into the pack of reds but sees a stray one fly into the bottom right corner. How unlucky!
HIGGINS 3-5 TIAN (64-71)
After all that Higgins coughs up the initiative with a weak error. Tian corks a long black into the bottom left corner to punish him and take the frame!
HIGGINS 3-4 TIAN (64-64)
Higgins gets the yellow and mops up the remaining balls to force a re-spot. What a start to the session!
HIGGINS 3-4 TIAN (37-64)
Higgins leaves a long red well and truly on after a rapid exchange of safety shots. Tian plants it into the bottom right pocket but then fluffs a routine yellow which would have sealed the frame. On we go!
HIGGINS 3-4 TIAN (37-63)
Tian comes so close to racking up enough points to steal the frame. He manages a break of 55, including a trio of tricky reds, but a cannon off the green means it all ends on the final red.
HIGGINS 3-4 TIAN (37-8)
Higgins picks up the baton and follows a pink to the centre left with a cannon into the pack of reds that doesn’t quite pay dividends. He has to work hard with a blue to the yellow pocket to get back into position. It looks routine from there but he catches a red ahead of his main target to the bottom right and is left shaking his head in disappointment as his break ends at 37.
HIGGINS 3-4 TIAN (0-8)
An early let off for Higgins. His poor safety cannons off the blue and leaves Tian with an opening. He takes on a red to the bottom left and has to wait a second or so as it jiggles with the jaws of the pocket before dropping. A routine black follows before the Chinese blows his lines on a red to the bottom right. Chance for Higgins.
AND ... WE'RE OFF!
The players are back at the table after the obligatory intros and rapturous applause. Time for business for the Wizard of Wishaw. He's got plenty of work to do here...
‘Two for the price of one!’ - Tian makes crazy fluke
NOW - HIGGINS SET FOR BATTLE
It's now time for the afternoon session at the Crucible. Four-time champion and fifth seed John Higgins is back in action and he needs to find his best form fast. The Scot was 4-1 down to world number 53 Tian Pengfei last night but ended a shortened session trailing 4-3 following some gruelling and rather lengthy frames. No.14 seed Jack Lisowski faces Ali Carter on the other table.
It's a huge slice of luck as Ding’s attempt to sink the black at the green pocket ends with a ricochet that sees it fly into the opposite corner! As a result, the Chinese star snatches the overnight advantage. After trailing 3-1 and 4-3 he takes the final two frames to lead for the first time in the match.
BINGHAM 4-4 DING (45-47)
A wry smile from Bingham as a superb attempt at a long blue just fails. The cue ball would have been right on the pink at the baulk cushion too. Ding pulls off an even better pot to eventually take care of the blue but then leaves the pink for Bingham to gobble up. It's a black-ball frame and neither player has a clear pot.
BINGHAM 4-4 DING (39-42)
Bingham picks up another six but it’s finely poised on the final red with both players looking for the opening for a pot. Ding takes it on long to the bottom left and comes up trumps! He edges in front on the scoreboard but a tough blue on the left cushion means he can’t win it at this stage. It's a fittingly tense finale to a topsy-turvy first session.
BINGHAM 4-4 DING (33-30)
Does anyone want this final frame? Bingham makes a break of 29 but misses a very make-able red to the bottom right pocket. We've seen some nice centuries in this first session but it's also been quite patchy at times.
BINGHAM 4-4 DING (4-30)
Bingham makes an early four but the world number nine gets a chance and looks set to charge clear. He has a nice rhythm flowing when a big miss on the pink gives Bingham another bite that he wasn’t expecting. Can he take it?
BINGHAM 4-4 DING (25-92)
Pressure? What pressure?! Ding slams home a red to the middle left pocket on frame ball and showcases some very smart cue action on a couple of tough pots as he levels once again with a break of 88.
BINGHAM 4-3 DING (25-4)
Bingham opens with four but slams the cue ball into the blue looking for the sanctuary of the baulk cushion. He’s nowhere near as a result and Ding conjures up a rather splendid snooker behind the blue close to the yellow pocket. Bingham goes through the motions trying to eek clear and has a large slice of luck when he smacks right into the pack of reds without leaving anything on. Ding fails to assert any authority and when his opponent cuts a delightful red into the bottom left pocket he thinks the writing is on the wall. Bingham works hard to try and engineer a frame-clinching break but ends on 21 after missing a pink to the middle right.
BINGHAM 4-3 DING (84-43)
It’s all about being ruthless when you get your chances and Bingham makes Ding pay just when it looked like the Chinese was flying. The man nicknamed ‘Ball-run’ chalks up a clearance of 84 and nudges the board in his favour once more.
BINGHAM 3-3 DING (0-43)
The reprieve doesn’t last long though. Bingham fails to sink a long red to the left corner and Ding is back in. A carefully placed brown to the green pocket helps the world number nine build a solid lead but he blows a red to the same pocket and trudges to his seat rather irritated.
BINGHAM 3-3 DING (0-22)
It really is quite wonderful cue control from Ding as he slots home a sixth long pot from seven attempts. He works hard from the brown to earn some position on the black but gets unlucky when his attempt to free the pack of reds goes awry. He’s left with nothing on and Bingham has a reprieve.
UPDATE ON WILSON v WILSON
Gary is 5-1 up on Kyren in the battle of the Wilson boys. It's got to be down to those shoes...
BINGHAM 3-3 DING (0-86)
Ding pulls off a major fluke when an attempt on a red to the bottom left corner ends with one racing into the pocket on the opposite side. Bingham looks on forlornly and doesn't get to leave his seat as the Chinese ace picks off a clutch of reds via the black from there. He’s really got the mojo flowing now and a break of 86 levels matters.
BINGHAM 3-2 DING (1-106)
That’s superb from Ding. He begins to build a solid lead and then tees himself up for a frame-winning run when he cannons into a pack of three reds when despatching the black to the bottom right pocket. It’s not been his session so far, but he’s just the one behind now thanks to his first century (105) of the contest as he finishes with an audacious clearance that sees him pot the black off two cushions into the green pocket. He certainly looks to have got some rhythm following the interval.
BINGHAM 3-1 DING (23-1)
Ding flashes in a lovely red to the bottom right pocket and follows up with a snooker behind the yellow near to the baulk end. He looks determined to swing the momentum here, but then gets an unfortunate ricochet as he looks to play another safety. It leaves a red over the bottom left corner for Bingham that he jumps all over. He eases to a break of 23 but runs out of position towards the end of it, leading to an error as he tries to get the cue ball back on the black. Chance for Ding.
'As good as it gets' - Bingham produces break of 131 to open match
BINGHAM 3-1 DING (130-4)
That is much more like it and the perfect way to follow up a disappointment. Bingham sizzles in a long red that releases the black to snatch control of a table that is well spread for him to really run riot. He gleefully pots away to claim his second century (129) and the 2000th in Crucible history. Time for the mid-session interval.
BINGHAM 2-1 DING (1-4)
Bingham snares a lonely red before Ding blows a real chance to build a healthy break. It’s in-keeping with how this session has gone so far. Bingham’s century in the opener feels like a long time ago. Plenty of twitchy moments from both of these players. Who will settle down and really take a grip of this contest?
BINGHAM 2-1 DING (45-80)
The Chinese star finally keeps his focus to get on the board. He misses the black to the green pocket right at the end but a break of 40 is enough. Bingham looks rueful. He knows he’s let the world number nine off the hook there.
BINGHAM 2-0 DING (45-40)
It’s so scrappy out there. Just when you think Bingham has found some lovely rhythm he blows a simple pot on 41 and it’s a chance Ding simply can’t turn down now.
BINGHAM 2-0 DING (4-40)
Well, that’s some real misfortune for Ding and sums up his start here. He clips a red with a safety but sees the white spin back up the table and into the pocket. Bingham can’t take advantage and a poor safety from him allows Ding back in. Those lucky enough to be sat in the Crucible think that’s it for the frame, but a bad miss on eight gifts Bingham a glimmer.
BINGHAM 2-0 DING (0-32)
Some super cue-action from Ding helps him glide a red to the bottom left to seize the momentum in frame 3. He know he needs a good break here but begins to run out of position and his run ends with him playing a safety on 32.
Snooker WCH Sheffield : Bingham makes a century in first frame
Image credit: Eurosport
BINGHAM 2-0 DING (89-48)
An unlucky kiss off the black from Bingham opens the door for Ding to snooker his opponent on the remaining two reds. It duly leads to a foul on the black. Ding misses a tough red from distance and Bingham manages to wrestle the initiative his way. A couple of fouls from Ding trying to clip a red off two cushions gives Bingham the scoreboard advantage again (55-48) but it remains a war of attrition until the 2015 champion comes up with another corker of a long-range red. A tough pink with the rest is followed by an audacious red off two cushions. Did he mean it? Not completely sure, but it’s enough to send him on his way and he claims a two-frame lead with a break of 34.
BINGHAM 1-0 DING (47-41)
It’s catching! Ding clocks up a break of 19 but misses a red to the middle left. Fortunately for him it rolls safe. Whoever regains control from here will surely take this frame now.
BINGHAM 1-0 DING (47-22)
A shaky black just about rattles in after some resistance early in the break but from there Bingham finds his groove. He looks sure to take an early grip of this tie but a drop of concentration sees him miss a relatively easy red to the bottom right. He takes his seat bearing a highly frustrated expression. It’s a break of 46 but leaves a golden opportunity for Ding to clean up.
BINGHAM 1-0 DING (1-22)
Oops. That one will hurt. Ding starts to build a decent break but it ends abruptly on 22 as he misses a three-ball plant to the bottom right by some distance. Chance for Bingham to make him pay.
BINGHAM 1-0 DING (1-0)
It’s cat and mouse stuff as both players showcase a variety of top-class safety play but once again it’s Bingham who sinks a delightful long pot to the bottom left corner to break the stalemate. It’s a brief moment of joy though as he can’t pot an angled black to the right and finally Ding has a chance to get off the mark, but it's one he wasn't expecting.
BINGHAM 1-0 DING
After some typically cagey safety play Ding is the first to blink and leave a half chance. Bingham nails the long red to the bottom left corner to make a very confident start. The brown follows to the middle right but he gets a bit of fortune with another long red that wrestles with the near jaw of the bottom right pocket before dropping. It paves the way for a very tidy break preying on the black. It takes some work to position his way towards separating the pack of reds but he makes a tricky scenario look rather routine as he breezes through to claim the opening frame with a century (131) clearance. What a start for the former champ!
Bingham is at the table and will get us underway with the first break.
Bingham leads the match-up 10-5 but the players haven’t met since 2016.
DING READY FOR TIE OF THE ROUND
Ding: “I’m looking forward to the match. It's always been my dream to win the world title. I need to face top players anyway… I need to play well over two weeks to have a chance. I have to play my best to win the game or I’ll be knocked out.”
THE HUNTED TURNED HUNTER
Bingham booked his place in round one with a 10-5 win over Luca Brecel in the final qualifying round for this year's tournament and is relishing the chance to return to the scene of his finest hour. He said: "I remember being the hunted when I was world champion, and this year ... it's like I've got nothing to lose, and I know if I play well I've got every chance."
HELLO AND WELCOME!
Here we go again then! It’s the third day of the 2021 World Snooker Championship and we are very close to getting underway with the action. This morning’s sessions sees 2015 World champion Stuart Bingham takes on number nine seed Ding Junhui in an intriguing early showdown, while on the other table last year’s finalist and no.6 seed, Kyren Wilson is up against namesake Gary Wilson.
Ding Junhui v Stuart Bingham
Kyren Wilson v Gary Wilson
John Higgins 4-3 Tian Pengfei
Jack Lisowski v Ali Carter
Anthony McGill 5-4 Ricky Walden
Kyren Wilson v Gary Wilson
Anthony McGill 5-4 Ricky Walden
Yan Bingtao 10-6 Martin Gould
John Higgins 3-4 Tian Pengfei
David Gilbert 10-4 Chris Wakelin
Stephen Maguire 4-10 Jamie Jones
Neil Robertson 10-3 Liang Wenbo
Recap: Neil Robertson is through to the second round
I believe they call that putting a marker down. Robertson utterly dominated Liang in both sessions of this match, and with two centuries and a 73 tonight he polished off this match before the mid-session interval. He is going to take some stopping, and one of Ali Carter and Jack Lisowski will get the first crack at that in the second round. It's a tough side of the draw, with Kyren Wilson and Judd Trump potentially lurking later on, but Robertson's performance here thoroughly justified his status as one of the short odds favourites for the title.
In other news, Jamie Jones has swept the first mini-session tonight against Stephen Maguire, and is just one frame from victory at 9-4.