Mark Selby battled back from two frames down to beat Ken Doherty 4-2 in the second round of the Gibraltar Open, and keep his hopes of winning the BetVictor European Series alive.
This season’s European Masters and Scottish Open winner entered the tournament knowing he had to better Judd Trump in the Gibraltar Open to pip the world number one to the £150,000 prize.
After making a poor start to the match, he looked a forlorn hope but Doherty faltered in the third frame, when 2-0 ahead, and Selby fought back to book his place in the third round.
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Selby made a bright start and was in control of the first frame but missed a simple green and Doherty stepped in with an excellent clearance on the colours, including a tough brown, to edge ahead.
The second frame was a carbon copy of the first, as Selby made a routine error and Doherty seized on the chance to open up a cushion.
It was Doherty’s turn to falter in the third and fourth frames. The mistake in the third was a huge error, as the Irishman was in the balls and well set when running out of position on a blue - which allowed Selby to gain a foothold.
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Selby has forged a career on the back of his fighting spirit and he drew level in the contest after Doherty missed a tough red into the middle.
As well as talent, luck can also play a part and Selby got a slice of it in the fifth frame. He had no clue about position off a long red and somehow the cue ball burrowed its way through the pack and he knocked in a pink to set up an excellent total clearance of 130.
Doherty had a chance in the sixth but ran out of position and paid the price when calling a foul on himself for a push shot, as Selby stepped in to close out the match with a break of 124.
After a low-key start, Selby finished in style and will take confidence into the third round. Doherty will reflect on missed opportunities.
Kyren Wilson opened up with a break off 105 and it set him on his way into the third round thanks to a 4-0 win over Fan Zhengyi.
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The 2021 Gibraltar Open is live on Eurosport. Watch it on eurosport.co.uk and the Eurosport app. You can download the Eurosport app for iOS and Android now.
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