Jak Jones
Main News, Ranking, World Championship

Jak Jones – ‘we dragged each other down’

Jak Jones beat Zhang Anda 10-4 on Sunday to reach the last 16 for the second successive World Snooker Championship.

The Welshman, a quarter-finalist 12 months ago, prevailed from a low-quality affair with the Chinese cueist at the Crucible Theatre in Sheffield.

Jones began promisingly with breaks of 75, 58, and 55 helping him to an early 5-1 lead, and he duly maintained a healthy buffer from then on.

But the majority of the match proved to be a scrappy affair, with Jones continuously taking advantage of poor play by Zhang.

It was a thoroughly disappointing display from the latter, who represented a seeded player in the draw for the first time after a breakthrough campaign.

Zhang won the International Championship on home soil and reached the final of two other ranking events this term, but the 32 year-old was nowhere near his best here.

“He’s obviously been one of the most in-form players of the season,” Jak Jones, who will play either Mark Williams or Si Jiahui in the second round, told the World Snooker Tour.

“He’s had an unbelievable season – especially to win the International in China and then get into the 16 as well.”

“He’s kind of pushed on from that as well, so it’s a big win. I think he missed a couple of balls unexpectedly.

“But I started missing a few balls as well. I think we kind of dragged each other down a little bit.

“Obviously he’s not played at the Crucible for five years, so it was a big occasion for me and a big occasion for him as well.

“It kind of showed in it being a little bit scrappy, long frames, but I’ll take the win.

“That match was a bit nervy from the beginning, so you either love it or you don’t feel very good, I think.

“I don’t think I felt great in that game. Hopefully, in the next match I can be a bit better. I wasn’t killing off frames in one visit.

“Even when it looked like I was going to, I’d play a careless shot or something would go wrong. I’ll have to improve on that.”

Jones will have a few days off before playing his second-round fixture on Friday and Saturday in Sheffield.

Zhang, meanwhile, became the second seed to bow out of this year’s World Snooker Championship after Luca Brecel succumbed to Curse of the Crucible on the opening day against David Gilbert.

2024 World Snooker Championship Draw

Round 1 (bo19)

Luca Brecel (1) 9-10 David Gilbert
Robert Milkins (16) 10-9 Pang Junxu
Ali Carter (9) 7-10 Stephen Maguire
Shaun Murphy (8) 10-5 Lyu Haotian

Mark Selby (5) 6-10 Joe O’Connor
Kyren Wilson (12) 10-1 Dominic Dale
John Higgins (13) 10-6 Jamie Jones
Mark Allen (4) 10-6 Robbie Williams

Judd Trump (3) 10-5 Hossein Vafaei
Tom Ford (14) 10-6 Ricky Walden
Zhang Anda (11) 4-10 Jak Jones
Mark Williams (6) 9-10 Si Jiahui

Ding Junhui (7) 9-10 Jack Lisowski
Gary Wilson (10) 5-10 Stuart Bingham
Barry Hawkins (15) 8-10 Ryan Day
Ronnie O’Sullivan (2) 10-1 Jackson Page

Round 2 (bo25)

David Gilbert 13-4 Robert Milkins (16)
Stephen Maguire 13-9 Shaun Murphy (8)

Joe O’Connor 6-13 Kyren Wilson (12)
John Higgins (13) 13-12 Mark Allen (4)

Judd Trump (3) 13-7 Tom Ford (14)
Jak Jones 13-9 Si Jiahui

Jack Lisowski 11-13 Stuart Bingham
Ryan Day 7-13 Ronnie O’Sullivan (2)

Quarter-Finals (bo25)

David Gilbert 13-8 Stephen Maguire
Kyren Wilson (12) 13-8 John Higgins (13)

Judd Trump (3) 9-13 Jak Jones
Stuart Bingham 13-10 Ronnie O’Sullivan (2)

Semi-Finals (bo33)

David Gilbert 11-17 Kyren Wilson (12)
Jak Jones 17-12 Stuart Bingham

Final (bo35)

Kyren Wilson (12) 18-14 Jak Jones

Click here for the latest live scores and session times.

Featured photo credit: WST

One Comment

  1. Jay Brannon

    Jak was wrong. Zhang not been there for eight years. I did tip this result as felt Zhang had peaked after such an incredibly transformative season in his career.

    Rob Walker changed Zhang’s nickname for this event from Mighty Mouse to China’s Snooker Panda. I preferred the older one.

    Trump into round two for the 12th time. He didn’t have a break over 50 after the seventh frame. His impressive long potting underpinned his victory. Vafaei could do with seeing a psychologist as too often he seems to get frustrated in big matches.

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