China’s Liang Wenbo reached the fourth round of the Riga Open after knocking out world champion Stuart Bingham on Saturday.
The 28 year-old’s highest break was just 50 but he recorded a second successive 4-1 triumph to add to an earlier victory over Ireland’s David Morris in Latvia.
Except for Liang and Welshman Mark Williams, who overcame Barry Pinches, Gerard Greene and Martin O’Donnell to reach the last 16, the bottom half of the draw has a very English flavour to it.
Crucible runner-up Shaun Murphy edged Peter Ebdon 4-2 after the latter had previously taken almost five hours to oust Nigel Bond in a marathon first round match 4-3.
Murphy will take on Matthew Selt for a place in the quarter-finals on Sunday while Ben Woollaston, Tom Ford, Rory McLeod and Oliver Lines also made it to the final day.
It’s an interesting line-up with veteran world champions like Williams and Ken Doherty seeking their first Main Tour titles in quite a while – particularly in the Dubliner’s case as he hasn’t tasted success since 2006.
Meanwhile, on the other end of the spectrum is Lines, with the 20 year-old hoping to go one better than his runner-up place in the Asian Tour’s Haining Open of last year.
Regular event winners Judd Trump, Shaun Murphy and Mark Allen will undoubtedly be among the favourites but, as ever with the short best of seven formats, it’s usually a case of who is in the best form on the given day.
Categories: Snooker News