Hong Kong’s Marco Fu continued his run of decent form by reaching the last 16 of the Gibraltar Open on Friday.
In doing so, the 37 year-old collected £3,500 for recording the fourth maximum break of his career in his 4-2 second round defeat of Sam Baird.
It’s the 116th competitive 147 break in professional snooker and comes less than a week after Neil Robertson achieved the feat in the UK Championship final – earning £44,000 for his efforts.
Fu becomes only the sixth player in history, though, to have done it four times after Ronnie O’Sullivan (13), Stephen Hendry (11), John Higgins (7), Ding Junhui (5) and Shaun Murphy, who also has managed it on four occasions.
Unfortunately for the recent General Cup champion, Fu barely had a sole watching his performance as the inaugural Gibraltar Open began in tame fashion.
Hardly any crowd turned up for the early exchanges of the fifth European Tour event of the season, although it did improve somewhat as the day progressed.
Still, as there is a three-year contract to stage this tournament one would hope that the attendances can drastically improve throughout the weekend.
Fu, meanwhile, wasn’t affected by his display and subsequently overcame Scotland’s Dylan Craig – one of many amateurs who enjoyed success in the initial rounds – to reach Sunday’s final day of action.
Joining him are a trio of semi-finalists from York last week.
Mark Selby ended the run of another amateur, the talented Zhao Xintong, after wins over Sydney Wilson and Yu Delu, while Barbican runner-up Liang Wenbo improved throughout the rounds with triumphs over the struggling Matthew Stevens, Joel Walker and Zak Surety.
David Grace, who was ranked 81st in the world rankings before embarking on a memorable run to the UK Championship last four, maintained his fighting spirit with a remarkable hat-trick of deciding frame victories over Jimmy Robertson, Stephen Maguire and Ireland’s Fergal O’Brien.
The 30 year-old from Leeds will take on Peter Ebdon for a quarter-final berth while other former ranking event winners in Dominic Dale and Kyren Wilson also advanced.
Finally, after two comfortable victories Luca Brecel squeezed past Lee Walker 4-3 to set up an upcoming clash with man of the moment Fu.
The second half of the draw is whittled down on Saturday to decide the full last 16 line-up.
Categories: Snooker News