Defending champion Ronnie O Sullivan will take a 6-2 into tomorrow mornings second session against Shaun Murphy,but it could all have been so different if Murphy could have taken full advantage of a sluggish start from The Rocket.
A lot of Ronnies subsequent problems against Perry in the last round could be traced back to a bad start and he was again slow out the blocks here as Murphy took the first with a 101 and then the second with a 59 to lead 2-0. He really should have been 3-0,but O'Sullivan managed to nick it having got the snooker he required on the green and then clearing up.Murphy again had his chances in the next,but Ronnie again won it to somehow go to the interval at 2-2.
From here Ronnie started to find some form,winning the next with a 72 to lead for the first time at 3-2 He then the next on the black to make it 4-2 ,before two majestic breaks of 94 & 134 gave him that 6-2 overnight lead.
Today was supposed to be the day we saw snooker history as Neil Robertson started out against Judd Trump needing one century to complete the ton of tons for the season,but its Trump who grabbed the headlines,with some of his best snooker in quite a while to lead this one 6-2 overnight. It had been Robertson who had taken the first frame here,before Trump quickly leveled things up at 1-1 The next also went to Trump as he took a 3-1 interval lead. From here he seemed to step things up a further notch,making it 4-1 with a run of 107 and then 5-1 with a run of 60. Robertson did stop the rot taking the next,but Trump knocked in another century,this time a 117 to take that 6-2 overnight lead.
In the other two matches it is surely only a matter of finishing things off tomorrow for Mark Selby & Barry Hawkins as they both enjoy big overnight leads.
The run of Alan McManus appears to be at an end as he trails Mark Selby. This clash between two of the games great tacticians had the potential to turn into a real war of attrition and it appeared that was the way it was going to turn out as McManus won a series of lengthy frames to lead 3-2 from 2-0 behind.Selby though found his range to go 4-3 before they payed the price for those long frames and were called in early
On resumption it was Selby who started to play better as McManus began to struggle to keep pace and the Leicesterman pulled away to move within touching distance of the semi finals with a 12-4 advantage.
Perhaps the most impressive performance of the day came from Barry Hawkins who leads Dominic Dale 11-5 after a day of high scoring from the 2013 runner up. breaks of 68,63,78 & 134 saw him lead 62 early on and he continued his fine form tonight to move to the brink of the semi finals and a possible meeting with the man who beat him in last years final Ronnie O'Sullivan.