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Sunday, 18 August 2013

ET 3 Bluebell Wood Open

Ricky Walden held off  a determined fightback from Marco Fu to win the deciding frame and claim the Bluebell Wood Open at the Doncaster Dome last night.

In a final that was hard fought and scrappy at times it was Walden who took a lengthy opening frame to lead 1-0.Fu leveled with a century in the next but it was Walden who pulled away again to lead 3-1.Fu to his credit battled back to win the next two to level at 3-3 and force the decider.

This turned into one of those long nervy deciders where both players had their chances before a fluked red allowed Walden in and he duly made the most of knocking in a smooth 65 to claim the title.

This was a fine win for Walden who must still have an odd sleepless night about how he let that World semi final against Hawkins slip from the his grasp.A crushing defeat like that has the potential to be a career defining moment for a player,but the surest way to dull the memory is to win matches against good players and that is what he did here,not just beating Fu in the final,but also with earlier wins over Ali Carter,Mark Allen and Shaun Murphy.

For Fu he will be slightly disappointed not to have claimed his second title of the season but he can be happy with how he fought here to get back into it and also with how he held off the fightback of Ding in the semi final when having lead 3-0 he saw Ding level at 3-3.Al this bodes well for him for the season ahead.

Of the games other big names the worlds top three ranked players all failed to negotiate the first round here with Neil Robertson & Judd Trump both losing deciding frames to Liang Wenbo & Ding Junhui and Mark Selby letting a 2-0 lead turn in to a 4-2 defeat to Vinnie Calabrese. 

Ronnie O Sullivan showed signs that he was not just here to punch in on the clock in coming back from 3-1 down to beat 15 Lyu Haotian in the first round,Haotian for his part impressed again in this match and there is little doubt that with the more experience he gets the higher his star is going to rise.Ronnie eventually went out in the last 32 to the impressive Peter Lines.

John Higgins also failed to reach the final day letting a 2-0 lead slip against Rod Lawler losing in the end 4-2.

Also a special word must be spared for Steve Davis,who may be only a few days away from his 56th birthday,but once again showed that the fire burns as bright as ever in reaching the last 16,,indeed his form here,not least in his fightback from 3-1 down against Jamie Jones, was as good as anything he has produced in recent years.He will have no doubt been annoyed with himself that he couldn't make the most of his chances when he lead eventual runner up Marco Fu 3-2 before eventually losing a tight decider.

So ends the tours stay in Doncaster with the venue coming in for some criticism for the uncomfortably warm playing conditions.Hopefully this is something that can be looked at in future as from a facilities point of view it seems to have been  vast improvment on other PTC venues,

Anyway onwards we go and it's off to Germany next weekend for ET4 The Paul Hunter Classic ..

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