The first round of UK Championship qualifying concludes and the second round gets underway inside the Morningside Arena in Leicester on Sunday when another bunch of players look to move closer to a spot in the main draw.
The first round concludes in the morning session with the second round taking place over the remainder of the day. That is the part of the tournament where those ranked between 49-80 in the rankings enter proceedings.
The first round of the competition concludes with eight more matches in the morning session on Sunday with Martin O’Donnell the highest ranked player on show. He has a meeting with the Scottish amateur Jack Borwick to negotiate while Hammad Miah is the second highest ranked player taking to the baize. He faces the Hungarian amateur Bulscu Revesz. Andy Lee comes next in the rankings and he faces another amateur in Joel Connolly while Andres Petrov meets the former professional Craig Steadman.
Four other matches take place in this session with Liam Pullen meeting Iulian Boiko while Ian Burns will look to make it into the second round at the expense of Amaan Iqbal. Ishpreet Singh Chadha has some good performances on his CV this season and he’ll be looking to see off the former Chinese professional Gao Yang. The other match sees Rory Thor also looking to make progress when he goes up against yet another amateur in Riley Powell.
Robbie Williams is the highest ranked player entering the second round of the tournament and he’ll face one of the lower ranked players in this round in Jenson Kendrick. David Grace is the second highest ranked player on show. He has a date with the amateur Ryan Davies who had to battle through the first round. There is a good looking match between Ashley Carty and Daniel Wells which should contain some good snooker while the pick of the matches in this session is the one between Ben Mertens and Marco Fu.
Michael White will fancy his chances of making progress out of this round when he takes on the former women’s world champion Mink Nutcharut while Martin Gould also enters the competition in this session. He meets Stuart Carrington. The other two matches sees Andy Hicks taking on Mohamed Ibrahim who has done well to make it this far while James Cahill will look to move to within a couple of wins of a place in the main draw when he faces Xing Zihao, who took care of Jimmy White in the first round.
Safer Gambling Week
This week is Safer Gambling Week, an initiative we are fully supportive of on this website. If you are having a problem with your gambling click the image below for help.
The second round continues in the evening session where two Welsh players are the highest ranked on show. Jackson Page is the leading one and he’ll go up against the Chinese cueist Jiang Jun while Dominic Dale will look to get the better of the young star Stan Moody in what is the pick of the matches in this session. Jamie Clarke and Xu Si are the other two higher ranked players taking to the baize. They meet Oliver Sykes and Ma Hailong respectively.
Four other matches take place in the evening session. He Guoqiang has made a good start to tour life and he’ll take on Ross Muir while the Shootout finalist Julien Leclercq goes up against Peng Yisong. Two young stars meet in another match as Dylan Emery takes on the Northern Irish amateur Robbie McGuigan who had a good win over Fergal O’Brien in the previous round. Zak Surety faces Allan Taylor in the other match on the day.
He Guoqiang and Ross Muir have already met this season and Muir won that 5-0. That was at the European Masters qualifying but since then they have largely gone in opposite directions. Guoqiang made the quarter final of the British Open and the last 16 of the Wuhan Open and English Open and over the course of the campaign he has got wins over Kyren Wilson, Barry Hawkins, Hossein Vafaei and Ryan Day among others.
Muir has had a bit of a resurgence recently having beaten Hossein Vafaei in the International Championship a couple of weeks ago but in the main he has been pretty quiet since that win over Guoqiang in that European Masters qualifying match. We should add some context to that result. Muir played the Championship League so he had some competitive action under his belt whereas Guoqiang didn’t and that match was the first match as a professional for the Chinese player so he was bound to be nervous. I don’t see that being the case here and I would expect He Guoqiang to extract revenge with a bit in hand.
Back H.Guoqiang (-1.5 frames) to beat R.Muir for a 3/10 stake at 1.95 with William Hill
Back him here: