Mark Williams has taken a controversial approach to the break-off recently. The three-time world champion has favoured rolling the cue ball down and up the table so it nestles underneath the reds; the intention being that he does not offer his opponents an opportunity at a long opener.
However, in the second session of his quarter-final against Mark Selby on Tuesday, the cunning plan cost him four points, and earlier in the season Judd Trump called it “negative”.
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Yet, Williams, who won the World Championship in 2018, remains unperturbed, labelling his shot "perfectly legal", as rumours swirled it could be banned.
And in the third session of his encounter with Selby – a match he would lose 13-3 – Williams went a step further, rolling up behind the pack but this time off four cushions.
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“Something different here from Williams,” said Phil Studd on commentary as the Welshman got down to the table facing towards baulk.
“If the defensive break-off is Plan B, this is probably Plan X,” added Studd.
I guess when you’re 11-3 down you have to try something left of field
The fans lapped it up but Selby would get the white back up to baulk with a delicately played safety, forcing Williams to give up four points with a foul and a miss.
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