Saengkham Sinks Maguire

The seeds had a mixed day two in the International Championship qualifying round at the Metrodome in Barnsley.

Maguire's last ranking title was the 2013 Welsh Open - photo courtesy of Monique Limbos.
Maguire’s last ranking title was the 2013 Welsh Open – photo courtesy of Monique Limbos.

Mark Allen and Michael White needed to go the distance to dispatch of their challengers on Wednesday but Stephen Maguire and Robert Milkins didn’t even get that far on Thursday.

Maguire has been struggling for form of late and it certainly showed as he was downed 6-2 by Thailand’s Noppon Saengkham.

The five-time ranking event champion risks dropping out of the elite top 16, which would jeopardise his position in the Masters in January.

Milkins was able to threaten a decider but eventually lost 6-4 to rookie Darryl Hill, the 19 year-old earning the best win so far of his fledgling career.

Meanwhile, Ali Carter and Barry Hawkins both recorded 6-0 whitewashes over Luke Simmonds and Rhys Clark respectively as they were no mood to waste any further time in South Yorkshire.

Former UK and Masters champion Matthew Stevens also raced to a shutout victory as he thrashed Scotland’s Fraser Patrick by the same scoreline.

Shaun Murphy and Marco Fu weren’t quite as emphatic but only dropped two frames each in their 6-2 triumphs over Lu Chenwei and Paul Davison.

Elsewhere, most of the remaining results went to script as well.

Ryan Day, Xiao Guodong and Jimmy Robertson inflicted heavy defeats on their opponents while the much-improved Jamie Cope beat Anthony Hamilton 6-2.

These are worrying times for the latter with his form and plummeting ranking suggesting that this may be the last season we get to see the Sheriff on the main tour.

The other wins were all reserved for Englishmen as Jack Lisowski, who looked more confident in the tactical exchanges following his recent work with coach Terry Griffiths, Oliver Lines, David Gilbert and Sean O’Sullivan all advancing to Daqing.

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