The second round of the World Championship qualifying event draws to a close at the English Institute for Sport in Sheffield on Monday and when the play is done for the day we will know the 32 men going into one last battle to make it to the Crucible Theatre next week.
Stephen Maguire, Ryan Day, Michael White and Alan McManus are among the players beginning out on their second matches in the event on Monday while the likes of Liang Wenbo and Martin Gould are among those returning to finish in the afternoon.
It was not the best of days for us betting wise on Sunday in terms of the completed bets. Gerard Greene came from 4-1 down to level at 4-4 against Ken Doherty and then proceeded to lose the next six frames. On a brighter note Michael Holt leads Elliot Slessor 5-4 and Liang Wenbo is well in control of his match against Zhao Xintong so we could be collecting on two bets on Monday afternoon.
It was the end of the road for Jimmy White on Sunday when he was well beaten by Joe Perry. Dave Gilbert and Yan Bingtao were other high profile casualties on the fifth day of competition but the likes of Ken Doherty, Ricky Walden, Matthew Stevens and Graeme Dott all made it through to play for a place at the Crucible.
As with on Saturday it is Ryan Day and Stephen Maguire who will have the main tables on Monday morning and again in the evening session. Day takes on Mitchell Mann in a match he should win while Maguire will face Hammad Miah in what should be a relatively comfortable clash for the Scot.
The side tables will be full again with Peter Ebdon continuing his qualifying quest with a match up against Robbie Williams. Zhou Yuelong plays Daniel Wells, Tom Ford goes up against Liam Highfield while there is an interesting tussle between Yu Delu and Jamie Jones. Jack Lisowski faces David Grace with Alan McManus playing Oliver Lines. Sam Baird and Jimmy Robertson will go at it while John Astley will aim to shock Michael White. The other match is an all-Asian clash between Noppon Saengkham and Hossein Vafaei.
It should be a formality for Liang Wenbo to see off Zhao Xintong on one of the main tables in the afternoon session as he takes a 7-2 lead into the resumption. The same might not be said of Martin Gould who trails Anda Zhang by the same score on the other main table. He needs a monumental turnaround.
Adam Duffy and Martin O’Donnell look to be cruising through to the final round. Duffy is 6-1 up on Matt Selt while O’Donnell leads Lu Haotian 6-2. Thepchaiya Un-Nooh and Xiao Guodong lead Adam Stefanow and Mei Xi Wen 6-3 respectively while Stuart Carrington will hope to convert a 5-4 lead on Ben Woollaston, Michael Holt the same against Elliot Slessor and Scott Donaldson also that score against Robert Milkins. The final match sees Rory McLeod 5-4 up on Li Hang.
I’m going with three bets over the course of the day. I’ll take two in the morning and then one turnaround in the afternoon. In the morning I’m going to ride the Noppon Saengkham train once again. He was excellent in walloping Chen Zifan in the previous round, beating him with a barrage of heavy scoring and now he takes on Hossein Vafaei. The Iranian was 8-6 down to Jamie Cope before he finally found the afterburners but he isn’t playing the snooker we know that he can so I’m on the Thai here.
Michael White struggled like crazy to get past Niu Zhuang in the first round. He didn’t even make a single 60 break in 19 frames which is unlike him and suggests he is already feeling the pressure of making it to the Crucible. John Astley breezed through the first round 10-1 and he’s the kind of player who can keep White honest. It might be that White scrapes through once again but not before Astley reaches seven frames.
In the afternoon session Ben Woollaston is 5-4 down to Stuart Carrington but he has nailed three decent breaks in the match so he isn’t playing badly by any stretch of the imagination. Carrington is a solid player but Woollaston is the better one and I think his experience and scoring ability can see him turn this one around and at odds against he’s decent value to do so.
Back B.Woollaston to beat S.Carrington for a 4/10 stake at 2.20 with Betfair
Back him here:
Back N.Saengkham to beat H.Vafaei for a 4/10 stake at 1.80 with Betfred
WON – Back J.Astley (+3.5 frames) to beat M.White for a 4/10 stake at 1.80 with Betfred