The fourth day of action in the World Grand Prix sees the second round of the tournament conclude and the quarter finals beginning on another busy day of snooker inside the Centaur Building at the Cheltenham Racecourse.
Big names continue to fly out of this tournament with John Higgins and Stephen Maguire among those beaten by lesser opponents on Wednesday which gives us an eclectic line up to enjoy on Thursday.
The main table has a couple of tasty looking matches on it in the afternoon session. The top seed Mark Allen gets play underway when he looks to reach another quarter final when he takes on Ali Carter before two men with tournament wins to their name meet in the second game as Paul Hunter Classic and German Masters winner Kyren Wilson takes on the English Open champion Stuart Bingham for a quarter final spot against Barry Hawkins.
The action isn’t too bad on Table Two on Thursday afternoon either with Ding Junhui first up on the baize. He looks to continue his revival against twice ranking finalist this season in Dave Gilbert in the opening match of the session. World number one Mark Selby then rounds off the afternoon when he takes on Noppon Saengkham who saw off John Higgins on Wednesday.
It is the first two quarter finals in the evening session on Thursday with the top half of the draw playing down to the semi-final stage. We don’t actually know the identity of the match on the main table but it will feature the winner of Mark Allen and Ali Carter taking on whoever comes through the Ding Junhui vs Dave Gilbert match.
The one quarter final we do have decided already takes place on Table Two as the Chinese pair of Xiao Guodong and Yuan Sijun go in search of a place in their first semi-final of the campaign and continue their push to make it into the next of the Coral Snooker Series tournaments.
I’ll go with a couple of bets over the course of the day. The first one comes in the form of Stuart Bingham, who I expect to take care of Kyren Wilson. Wilson was all over the gaff in his opening win against Matthew Stevens and playing like that he is going to take a heavy beating like he did the last time these two met in the UK Championship in December when Bingham won 6-1. I’m a huge Wilson fan but he didn’t look right to me on Wednesday. That isn’t a massive surprise as he has been in action a lot recently and winning can take it out of a player. Bingham rattled in two tons in the first round so he’s cueing the ball nicely and I think he’ll have enough to beat Wilson here.
I fancy Yuan Sijun to come through in the all-Chinese quarter final. He has taken on Xiao Guodong twice this season and has beaten him 6-1 and 4-0 so he doesn’t fear his countryman that is for sure. Guodong has earned me some money this week but he has given plenty of chances to his opponents but for one reason or another they’ve not been taken. I would expect Sijun to take them here so he is my selection. There doesn’t appear to be a huge weakness in the youngster’s game and the time might have arrived for him to make his major breakthrough. He can do that with a win here.
Back S.Bingham to beat K.Wilson for a 4/10 stake at 2.10 with Betfair
Back him here:
Back Y.Sijun to beat X.Guodong for a 4/10 stake at 2.00 with Coral