Luca Brecel is into the last eight of the 6 Red World Championship after winning both of his knockout round encounters on Thursday in Thailand.
The Belgian beat Ivan Kakovsky in the last 32 before a 6-5 victory over former champion Ricky Walden – when the tournament was under a previous guise in 2008 – to reach the quarter-finals.
However, it was Brecel’s progression from the group stages which has caused much chatter on social media over the last 24 hours.
The 21 year-old had won his opening four encounters in the round-robin phase to guarantee his position in the knockout phase, but apparently got the schedule wrong for his final league encounter with Peter McCullagh, failing to turn up which gave the Australian amateur a walkover triumph.
However, while McCullagh notched an extra win in his column, the official score for the tie was deemed 0-0, eliminating McCullagh from the competition.
McCullagh had been in a position to qualify from Group H in fourth place ahead of home hopeful Boonyarit Kaettikun, with a 5-3 or better scoreline enough to ensure his progression ahead of the Thai on frame difference.
Yet, the 0-0 result meant McCullagh’s unfortunate exit by a single frame, which seems particularly unfair considering the no-show was through no fault of his own.
Regardless, Kaettikun lost 6-5 to Joe Perry in the first round, who in turn was downed by another Thai, Akani Songsermsawad, in the last 16.
Songsermsawad is the last local favourite attempting to claim glory on Saturday after six of his countrymen, including defending champion Thepchaiya Un-Nooh, all crashed out on the third to last day.
Un-Nooh was downed by 2015 champion Stephen Maguire, who will take on Brecel for a place in the last four.
Elsewhere, Chinese duo Ding Junhui and Liang Wenbo will play each other for a semi-final berth – the former ousting six reds king Mark Davis in the last 32.
Meanwhile, Pankaj Advani has continued his unbeaten run in the tournament, taking advantage of his kind draw with consecutive triumphs over fellow amateurs Lukas Kleckers and Yuan Sijun.
The Indian will play Michael Holt while Stuart Bingham thrashed Dominic Dale to set up a clash with Songsermsawad.
The finalists will be determined on Friday before the showdown for the £45,000 winner’s cheque takes place on Saturday.
Categories: Snooker News