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Shaun Murphy is through to the second round

O'Sullivan exclusive: 'Can you justify feeling like s***?' – Why depression stalks snooker

What an epic that turned into! After eventually locating his groove to move into a 5-3 lead, Shaun Murphy was then pegged back by a gritty display from Lee Walker, who used every ounce of his knowhow to force a post-midnight decider. Murphy can dig in too however, and a sensational attacking safety in the final frame was the key shot of a match he came perilously close to losing. He now advances to the second round of the UK Championship, where he'll face the winner of Elliot Slessor and Mitchell Mann. Thanks for your company tonight, sleep well!

Murphy 6-5 Walker

Murphy misses the second to last red, but he's done enough. Walker concedes, and Murphy takes it on a decider.

Murphy 5-5 Walker (54-6)

The break goes to 40 and Walker does now need a snooker. He won't be coming back though, Murphy rolls in a red near the right rail and the black follows. He's made it - just - to the second round.

Murphy 5-5 Walker (54-6)

Murphy takes his break to 31 with the black; two more reds will leave Walker needing a snooker.

Murphy 5-5 Walker (23-6)

A chance for Walker as Murphy misses a red down the right rail and leaves it on as a thin cut on to the bottom right. Walker can only make six though, and you already get the sense we're in for the long haul. Soon after Murphy absolutely creams in a long red to the bottom right with backspin, but gets through the cue ball so well he leaves himself back on the top cushion. That cue power is something else. Murphy then tucks Walker in behind the yellow, and it's forced a mistake; Walker rolls down to the reds and leaves one on for Murphy. He pots it and tries to force position on pink or black, but it doesn't come off. Murphy's next shot though is a stunner. It's an attacking safety, opening the reds and moving the pink and black into play, while tucking Walker in behind the yellow. That's the shot of the match, and in attempting to escape from the snooker Walker misses the reds and leaves Murphy right in position to finish it here.

Murphy 5-5 Walker (17-0)

This is incredibly tense. Walker has a jab at a long red to the yellow pocket, but it rattles and spits back out. After some very cautious safety Walker then tries a long red to the bottom left, which misses by a long way and sits up over the green pocket for Murphy. This is the first real chance; Murphy strokes it in to land on the green, and he's away here. He cruised to a 139 earlier, but what he'd give for a fifty plus now. It goes awry on 17 though as he can't find an angle on a red to bottom right, and he's forced to play safe.

Murphy 5-5 Walker

Right then, who's your money on here? The momentum's certainly with Walker, but Murphy is the more likely to take this out in one visit. Will we be here until two bells in the morning on the final black?

Murphy 5-5 Walker

A nightmare for Murphy here as he gets a double kiss on the blue, and he's left it over the bottom left. Walker tucks it in, and the pink, and he's pulled level! What a comeback from him. Grab a brew people, because we're going to a post-midnight decider!

Murphy 5-4 Walker (53-59)

There is some incredible safety play going on here. Walker lands the white in behind the black now, from where Murphy comes off two cushions to make a featherlite connection on the green and put the white in behind the brown! What a shot. For his next shot Murphy has a look at a long green and he nails it, followed by the brown. The blue, which has been sat on the side rail this whole time, is now a key ball with pink and black in the open already. Murphy needs the lot, Walker needs blue and pink.

Murphy 5-4 Walker (46-59)

His potting might have gone to bits in this frame, but Murphy's safety is on the money as he lands the white in right behind the black near the bottom cushion, with the green ten feet away. Walker can't connect with his first attempt, and Murphy can now win with what's left. Walker connects at the fourth attempt, and the green goes safe.

Incidentally, on Walker turning down the final red earlier, three times world champion Mark Williams has endorsed his choice of shot. Let's face it, he knows more than I do.

Murphy 5-4 Walker (34-59)

Murphy fails to get out of the snooker and brings the brown into play; he's also left Walker straight on it to the yellow pocket, but incredibly he turns it down and asks for the balls to be replaced! That's extraordinary. Murphy misses twice more - the first time he doesn't leave the white near the red, on the second he leaves him a mid-ranger to the green pocket. That goes down, and Walker's quirky shot selection may well have paid off. A pink follows but he can't pot the yellow, so Murphy will keep going as he only needs one snooker. He pots the yellow, and then snookers Walker on the green. Walker misses from his attempted escape, and Murphy can now tie! What a bizarre frame.

Murphy 5-4 Walker (28-40)

Walker adds 23 to take the lead in the frame, before laying a snooker behind the blue off the last red on the table. He's now got control of the table.

In other news, Mark King has beaten David Lilley 6-5 to advance to the second round.

Murphy 5-4 Walker (28-17)

After drawing a foul from Murphy, and watching him miss a red to the bottom left when playing out of the jaws of the bottom right, Walker steps in to thin snick a red into the bottom left. It's an opening, but again he can't string anything together; he makes seven before missing a black to the bottom right by a long way. That's left Murphy in, but his game has fallen apart for the moment. After potting one red he then misses a straightforward blue, and Walker is back in. Can either of these players put some points together and claim this frame?

Murphy 5-4 Walker (26-6)

This could be decisive; Walker's safety coughs a red out right over the bottom right, which Murphy booms in. He can't get on the pink, so instead fashions an excellent snooker, tucking the cue ball in right behind the brown near the top cushion. Walker is in all sorts here. He escapes from the snooker, but leaves Murphy a red to the left middle, which misses off the bottom knuckle.

Murphy 5-4 Walker (26-6)

Walker can only add six points. After a bout of safety Walker then misses a long red to the bottom right, which eventually kisses the brown off its spot and sits up for Murphy to dispatch into the green pocket. He's back in, and although the black is tied up he soon pots the pink to get it back on its spot and available into both corner pockets. It's a diffcult table, with all remaining reds around the black spot but not spread that far apart. With the white near the side cushion Murphy then misses a cross-table red to the bottom left, and it's end of break. Fortunately, he's not left Walker anything to go at.

Murphy 5-4 Walker (9-0)

Two stunners get Murphy going in the tenth - a long red to the bottom right, followed by a thumping long yellow into its own pocket. Yet he follows that up with a poor shot, missing an almost straight red to the left middle. He's had the chances to put this to bed, but he hasn't taken them. Can Walker take this to a decider? Not for the moment, as he leavves Murphy a long red right over the bottom right which disappears. A poor positional shot on the blue though necessitates a thrash at a red at the bottom of the pack. It misses, rattles out of two of the corner pockets and sits up over the yellow pocket for Walker.

Around the tables

Mark King 4-5 David Lilley

Shaun Murphy 5-4 Lee Walker

Chris Wakelin 6-0 Louis Heathcote

Gary Wilson 4-6 Oliver Lines

Murphy 5-4 Walker

Murphy misses a long pink to the green pocket, gets a double kiss and leaves a mid-range pink to the bottom left for Walker. He won't be turning this one down...and it's there! Walker extends the match, Murphy is now one up with two to play.

Murphy 5-3 Walker (56-60)

Walker mops up the baulk colours, then stuns in the blue, bounces off the bottom cushion and shifts the pink into play. He's got it on to the green pocket...yet he turns it down to play safe! What a surprising choice of shot. It was hardly an easy one and it certainly wasn't straight, but he had to have a go at that surely. Will he regret such a defensive mindset in the next few minutes?

Murphy 5-3 Walker (56-46)

Walker takes out the remaining reds and we go to the colours. He'll need everything up to and including the pink to win this, and it's in an awkward position on the left hand rail.

Murphy 5-3 Walker (56-26)

It's a half-century for Murphy, and two of the remaining three reds will sort it...but Murphy misses a red to the left middle! That didn't even go close, a stinker of a shot. He's 30 ahead with 51 on here, and Walker has a great chance here to prolong the argument to a tenth frame.

Murphy 5-3 Walker (18-26)

Walker blinks first in the safety battle, catching a red far to thin and leaving the white in the middle of the table. After all the safety play the black has now been freed up, so its a chance for Murphy as he drops in a red over the bottom left and leaves a thin cut on it. That disappears, and Murphy is now in and with a chance to take frame and match.

Murphy 5-3 Walker (4-26)

This is a fiendishly difficult break for Walker after the black won't go back on its spot and has to be placed as close to the pink on its spot as possible, taking both out of the equation for now. One attempt to split them from high on the blue goes awry when the pink pops out, but only to land on the side cushion. Walker can't make more than 26 - he's done well to get that on this table - before playing safe.

Murphy 5-3 Walker (4-8)

Nerves abound at the start of the ninth, as both players miss mid-range reds to the bottom left. Murphy, from off the bottom cushion, then casually strokes in a red to the right middle, but a yahoo off the green to try and split the pack misses the reds completely and he's on nothing. Walker then drops in a deadweight red to come around the black off the bottom cushion and land straight on it. Now then, Lee; what have you got left?

Murphy 5-3 Walker

Murphy puts in that work; he develops and picks off the necessary reds, adding 37 with only two reds left on the table. It's a modest break, but huge in the context of the match. Murphy needs just one more frame to move through to the second round.

Murphy 4-3 Walker (39-4)

Get comfy, because we'll be here for a wee while. Both players are bogged down in an attritional safety exchange, and lots of reds are out of commission. It's over ten minutes now since a ball was potted, until mercifully Murphy jams a mid-range red into the bottom left. There's a few reds to play around, but he'll have to work extremely hard to turn this into a frame-winning visit.

Murphy 4-3 Walker (31-4)

Murphy gets to 31, inclusive of an exquisitely timed green to its own pocket to land on a red in baulk, but catches a a red and goes in-off to bring a promising break juddering to a halt.

Murphy 4-3 Walker (16-0)

This is a big old frame, and Murphy gets the first opportunity in it. After taking a red into the green pocket though he then misses the blue to right middle. Walker can't capitalise though, as he misses another red to the bottom right high on the jaw. It looks like he could pay for that, as Murphy rattles a red into the same pocket followed by the brown, and he's now at the business end of the table with plenty of loose reds to play on. He then gets an extraordinary slice of luck when a thin red with the rest is way off the potting angle but clips the blue to divert into the bottom right. There's some tension out there alright.

Around the tables

Mark King 2-4 David Lilley

Shaun Murphy 4-3 Lee Walker

Chris Wakelin 6-0 Louis Heathcote

Gary Wilson 3-5 Oliver Lines

Murphy 4-3 Walker

He can't get one; Murphy leaves the final red on for Walker, who clears up to and including the pink to take the seventh frame.

Murphy 4-2 Walker (22-60)

Murphy gets a red down but can't shift the black as he does so. The blue is on instead, and he pots it, but he'll now need a snooker. Taking a pink with the second last red doesn't change that, and Murphy then traps Walker behind the black. Walker escapes - just - but the table is set nicely for snookers on this final red for Murphy.

Murphy 4-2 Walker (9-60)

Walker adds 14 but can't get position on a colour that would seal the frame, and opts to put the black safe instead. It's a tall order for Murphy - there's 51 on, and he's 51 behind.

Murphy 4-2 Walker (9-46)

It's a disaster for Walker as he leaves a red hanging in the jaws of the bottom right. That was just off-straight, and a poor shot. He's covered it with the black, but Murphy has a red to the right middle and a chance to steal the frame. Amazingly, he gets to nine and then misses a virtually straight black off its spot. What a let off for Walker, who should secure the frame from here.

Murphy 4-2 Walker (1-22)

Murphy picks out a complex plant to start the seventh - at least we assume as much, because he doesn't apologise when the red drops softly in - but can't then cut the blue into the right middle to get another break going. It's a chance for Walker now, who's been kept away from the table for the vast majority of the last three frames. Can he put some meaningful points up in response here? He's up to 22 thus far.

Murphy 4-2 Walker

An additional 29 from Murphy draws the line under this one, and he now leads by two frames.

Murphy 3-2 Walker (81-0)

A break of 67 takes Murphy past the winning post in this frame. With no red on he has to play safe and his break eventually ends on 72. Walker requires three snookers...make that four, because he's miscued again and hit the blue rather than the red. He's gone all O'Sullivan on us though and is playing on from a doomed position.

Murphy 3-2 Walker (54-0)

Gears are being gone through here. A black secures a half-century, and he'll need three more reds to land a third frame on the spin.

Murphy 3-2 Walker (25-0)

Walker gifts Murphy four points at the start of the sixth frame when he miscues and misses his intended red completely. Murphy then gets in first, gliding in a long red to the bottom left and then potting a tricky blue to the green pocket to get on his next red. There's been a definite and noticeable gear shift in the last two and a bit frames. Murphy is striding purposefully around the table now, and his break here is up to 21 so far.

Around the tables

Mark King 1-3 David Lilley

Shaun Murphy 3-2 Lee Walker

Chris Wakelin 6-0 Louis Heathcote

Gary Wilson 3-4 Oliver Lines

Murphy 3-2 Walker

A break of 31 banks the fifth frame for Murphy, who regains the lead.

Murphy 2-2 Walker (61-6)

Murphy tags in a long red and pulls up short of baulk, presenting him with the chance to sort the frame here. The pink leaves Walker needing snookers with three reds remaining.

Murphy 2-2 Walker (37-6)

Murphy's effort curtails on 37 when he can't pot a difficult black to the bottom left. That's left Walker in, but he can only add six as he fails to disturb the pack off the blue and has to play safe.

Murphy 2-2 Walker (22-0)

We're back out, and Murphy picks up where he left off in the fourth frame by bulleting in a long red to the bottom right in the fifth, landing plum on the blue to boot. That's a great shot, and he's quickly up to 22 and counting here.

Murphy 2-2 Walker

The black secures a century for Murphy, and he's not done. He eventually dishes up the lot for a magnificent 139 and we're all square at the interval. The players will now take a 15 minute break, see you shortly.

Murphy 1-2 Walker (68-0)

The tenth red is frame ball, and down it goes. He's not played well so far tonight, but this is more like the Murphy we know, and it will put any frustrations from that elongated third frame out of his mind.

Murphy 1-2 Walker (53-0)

Murphy does split the pack, but it's not great; he then rescues position with a beautiful thin red with side to bring the white back around the black and land perfectly on it. That's a classy shot, and he's quickly up to a half-century.

Murphy 1-2 Walker (23-0)

Both players miss mid-range efforts at reds to start the fourth frame, before Murphy gets in. He could really do with a heavy score here, because he's not played well so far. It's started well, as he's up to 23, and has one loose red to play for before he has to disturb the pack.

Around the tables

Mark King 1-2 David Lilley

Shaun Murphy 1-2 Lee Walker

Chris Wakelin 4-0 Louis Heathcote

Gary Wilson 2-3 Oliver Lines

Murphy 1-2 Walker

Walker doubles the blue into the left middle, and Murphy now needs two snookers. He plays on but goes in-off in the right middle, and this long, long frame is over as Walker hits the front.

Murphy 1-1 Walker (48-64)

Now then, this could be a swing in momentum. Walker only adds seven before missing a black to the yellow pocket, and it's a chance to steal the frame for Murphy. He cleans up the remaining reds with colours, but can't land on the yellow and has to play safe. After another exchange, Walker flukes a double on the yellow into the bottom right, but then misses a green and leaves it on for Murphy. If he can pot up to and including the pink, he'll win the frame. Murphy lands perfectly on the blue near the bottom cushion to facilitate this, but plays the pot with pace for some reason and rattles it in and out! His head's gone a bit here, and he soon misses a thin contact - thrice - when trying to play safe off the blue. My oh my. Murphy gets a warning that he'll lose the frame if he does that again, and drops the blue on the side cushion this time. We go on!

Murphy 1-1 Walker (23-40)

After a marathon bout of safety, and with the frame now over half an hour old, Walker finally drops a red into the left middle. There are still six left on the table. Walker gets to work, and with most of the reds open apart from one in close proximity to the black, this is a good opportunity. He can only make 13 though before overcutting a red to the bottom left, but he doesn't pay for it; Murphy is on nothing, and plays a dreadful safety shot to leave Walker in the bottom half of the table and all reds now in play.

Murphy 1-1 Walker (23-27)

Walker initially has the better of a prolonged safety exchange and gets another chance in the frame. He takes the lead in the frame on the black, re-spotting it in the process, but in doing so it blocks the path of his intended red to the bottom left. That's end of break, and Walker will rue a missed chance there.

Murphy 1-1 Walker (23-6)

The first chance of the third falls to Walker, who can only make six before missing a just off-straight red to the bottom left. Murphy responds by picking a plant out of the pack and dropping the red into the bottom right, and he's away. On 23 though he misses a red to the bottom right with the rest after running slightly out of position, and it's a reprieve for Walker, who then plays an excellent full ball snooker in behind the brown.

Murphy 1-1 Walker

Walker adds 15, and that'll do it; we're all square.

Murphy 1-0 Walker (11-60)

Murphy snicks in a red to the bottom left, but then misses a routine blue to the middle to bring Walker back to the table. What a terrible shot, and Walker should tidy this up now. A quick red and pink ensure Murphy needs a snooker, and there's more to come.

Murphy 1-0 Walker (10-60)

It's a very measured 60 now for Walker, who needs red-colour-red to get over the line. He's landed in a bad position though, hampered by another red on a choice of three, and misses one along the rail to the bottom right. Murphy is still in this.

Murphy 1-0 Walker (10-36)

Murphy leaves Walker in after failing to drop a red into the bottom right. Walker, who is very methodical about his work, has an open table to go at here. He's up to 36 already, and should turn this into a half-century at least.

Murphy 1-0 Walker (10-0)

Walker catches the blue with the cue ball from his break-off shot, and he's left Murphy a mid-range red to the bottom right. Murphy plays these shots so well, and hammers the red in before coming up for the blue. He runs out of position on 10 though, and that's end of break.

Murphy 1-0 Walker

From Walker's safety the brown catches the knuckle of the right middle, and lands over left middle for Murphy. He steps in to cut that in, followed by blue, pink and black, and he's one frame ahead.

Murphy 0-0 Walker (40-52)

Walker takes the lead as he approaches the colours, but can't get position on the yellow and plays safe. After a safety exchange between the two Walker pots yellow and green, but can't get good position on the brown and plays safe again. He needs brown and blue to win, Murphy needs the lot.

Murphy 0-0 Walker (40-25)

A plant by Murphy to the bottom right is close, but hangs in the jaws. Walker has to swerve around the brown to get to it; incredibly, even though it was easier to pot the red with any contact, Walker makes only the slightest brush on the red and it doesn't go in. Murphy then pots the red using the spider, but can't fashion position on the black. It's Walker that gets the next chance as Murphy misses a long red, and he gets right back into it. He's on 25 and counting so far.

Murphy 0-0 Walker (39-0)

Murphy gets in first with a long red, and then gets on the next one with a deep screw on a yellow that takes the white in and out of baulk and lands perfectly on a red to right middle. His cue power, with so little backlift, really is stunning. He’s up to 39 already and has settled straight into this. He misses the pack when trying to develop more reds though, and that's end of break.

Murphy 0-0 Walker

Right then, we're off. Best of 11 for a place in the second round.

So then, the players

It’s been an underwhelming season for Shaun Murphy so far. Since reaching the semi-final of the European Masters, he hasn’t made it past the second round of any of the subsequent tournaments. He’s knows his way around the UK Championship though; Murphy won this tournament before by edging Marco Fu in a decider back in 2008 and has reached two other finals since then. His opponent, Lee Walker, is currently number 122 in the world and is yet to win a match this season.

Baize news

Matthew Stevens, the winner of this tournament in 2003, has had to withdraw from his match against Jamie Jones tonight after testing positive for COVID-19. Jones gets a walkover and advances to the second round.

Good evening!

Welcome to live coverage of the evening session of day two of the UK Championship. We’ll have more first round action tonight, and our featured match is Shaun Murphy versus Lee Walker. Your full bill of fare is as follows:

Mark King vs. David Lilley

Shaun Murphy vs. Lee Walker

Chris Wakelin vs. Louis Heathcote

Gary Wilson vs Oliver Lines


We're off, but only for half an hour

Join us then for Shaun Murphy v Lee Walker!

Around the tables

David Gilbert 6-3 Fang Zhengyi

Robert Milkins 6-4 Si Jiahui

Kyren Wilson beats Ashley Hugill 6-4!

What a fun and strange match that was! Wilson made a ton and a 147 but also missed some of the easiest balls you'll ever see a pro miss, never mind the fourth best pro in the world. But he's thorugh and meets Mark Joyce or Eden Sharav next. As for Hugill, he can take heart from how he played and how he competed, always looking to attack and make the play. This game.

Wilson 5-4 Hugill (71-37)

There are five reds left and Kyren will need all of them, but the way he's going, that's what's going to happen - he looks really calm and methodical now, as though this is what he needed to get going, and he's now removed all the easy reds so needs to resolve the two on cushions He gets in behind the first off a pink, very nicely done, while we cut to Ashley, gutted after getting himself in a good position for force a decider. Kyren then punches home the black, and has a red along the top rail .. this is match ball, but it's hard ... it's in the jaws if he misses it ... AND IT'S THERE!

Wilson 5-4 Hugill (40-37)

Kyren accumulates slowly, inseucre in the knowledge that if he misses, he's probably playing a decider. There's a lot of work to do here, but gradually, he's getting it did.

Wilson 5-4 Hugill (9-37)

What! Hugill catches the near jaw cutting in a tight red - that's your pressure - and this ia good chance for kyren to tie up frame and match. Off he goes.

Wilson 5-4 Hugill (0-21)

Kyren hits on his third go and we're back palying safety, till he misses a delicate red into the middle and leaves it! If Ashley can pot this and he shoul, can he get down to the black? Yes he can! There's a lot of work to do here, but he's at the table trying to do it.

Wilson 5-4 Hugill (0-1)

We're embroiled in a safety exchane but the way these two are playing it's unlikely we'll be so for long. And there we are! Kyren is too soft with a safety, leaving Ashley a red; he takes it, but a cannon then snookers him behind another forcing him to play off the side cushon for the brown, which is next to the blue ... if he hits it's a snooker, and what a shot that is! Perfection!

Wilson 5-4 Hugill

Hugill dropped off the tour last year and hasn't won a single match since returning, so this is a great show. But his break-off here is poor - he clips the blue - but he gets lucky, leaving nowt.

Around the tables

David Gilbert 5-3 Fang Zhengyi

Michael Holt 6-4 Gao Yang (finished)

Robert Milkins 5-4 Si Jiahui

Wilson 5-4 Hugill

Wilson goes one up with two to play but Hugill needn't be downhearted - there's every chance he'll get a proper shot at forcing a decider.

Wilson 4-4 Hugill (51-13)

Hugill tries to force a pot on those reds, misses and splits them for Kyren. That'll surely be the frame.

Wilson 4-4 Hugill (44-13)

Kyren can't make his next chance count but then he pots the finest of cuts, a red into the centre - that's a magical shot - and though the snooker must've been tempting because the last three reds are clustered together, he takes the points for the black then plays safe. The lead is 31 with 51 available.

Wilson 4-4 Hugill (26-13)

And there it is! Hugill misses an easy red!

Watch Kyren Wilson's magnificent 147 maximum break in full

Wilson 4-4 Hugill (26-9)

Ashley leaves Kyren a long red but one near the pocket, and he follows it with a really good blue. But shortly afterwards he misses the yellow with the rest, and all of a sudden he's in serious danger of going out of this competition in the first round, because Ashley is at the table and looking good. He won't have expected to reach this point, so the pressure will increase and rapidly, but for now he looks in good control.

Wilson 4-4 Hugill (13-2)

No there aren't. The blue doesn't go so it's one and done, but then Kyren misses a red ... but then Ashley love misses a much easier one! It's getting tense in the arena, which means it's getting exciting in our lounges. Lovely stuff.

Wilson 4-4 Hugill (13-2)

Ashley pots a long red and tries to disturb the black, which is very close to a stray red; that's another very attacking shot and he's so close to pulling it off, only to then miss a straight pink. Gah. Kyren is right there and quickly into the bunch; the spread of reds is decent but pink and black are out of commission ...and then he misses with the rest! You don't see that very often, and he's not got away with it. Ashley will need to take at least one and probably more red-blues, but there are points there for him.

Around the tables

David Gilbert 5-2 Fang Zhengyi

Michael Holt 5-4 Gao Yang

Robert Milkins 4-3 Si Jiahui

Wilson 4-4 Hugill

Whaddaya know?! Hugill pots yellow and green - he's playing well now - and we've got ourselves a ball-game!

Wilson 4-3 Hugill (31-70)

After some chasing, Hugill slides home a very nice red; he can't follow it with the yellow, but Kyre returns to the table despite needing three snookers.

Wilson 4-3 Hugill (31-62)

Or not! Worried about position, Wilson misses a red down the side rail; that was a major oversight, and Hugill works hard to make the frame safe. He can't, quite, but he's now a big favourite.

Wilson 4-3 Hugill (17-51)

Goodness me! This has been such a good break from Hugill because the table was infelicitously decorated, but then he misses a straight black with frame-ball around the corner. The clearance awaiting Wilson isn't a gimme, but it's he might be feeling a little more focused than previously.

Wilson 4-3 Hugill (0-39)

Hugill gets in first and he's full of confidence now. In fairness, he's tried to attack all the way through the match, and he cracks the pack early doors and does plenty with the white in the process - "That's a Ronnie O'Sullivan shot" says Uncle Joe. And later in the break, he finds a gorgeous long red; we're not far off a best of three!

Around the tables

David Gilbert 4-2 Fang Zhengyi

Michael Holt 4-3 Gao Yang

Robert Milkins 3-3 Si Jiahui

Wilson 4-3 Hugill

Kyren has missed some balls this afternoon - like Luca Brecel admitted last week, it's hard to raise it when you're sure you'll win whatever - but even so, I doubt there've been many times someone has played this well and this badly in the same session. But well done Ashley Hugill for taking advantage of that; he's still in this match.

Wilson 4-2 Hugill (4-66)

Good stuff from Ashley, love. He's not going to need the two difficult reds close together on the top cushion, unless Kyren gets a couple of snookers, and the seventh frame is nearly his.

Wilson 4-2 Hugill (4-18)

Great shot Ashley love! He cracks two reds full in the face and one scoots into the top right but then misses a difficult green into the middle. There's not much on for Kyren because so many reds are clustered on the yellow side of the table - he takes on a very tricky cut, misses, and the table is there for Ashley.

Wilson 4-2 Hugill (4-0)

Yeah, time's up. Kyren cracks in one of those reds that you'd never get near down the club and he's purring now ... but can only manage a yellow and it's end of break. He gets the next go though, but somehow hits the knuckle with the kind of pink you really might bags down the club - he is not happy and rightly so, advising himself of those sentiments in broad Anglo-Saxon.

Around the tables

Yuan SiJun 5-6 Chen Zifan (finished)

David Gilbert 3-2 Fang Zhengyi

Michael Holt 3-3 Gao Yang

Robert Milkins 3-2 Si Jiahui

That really was a sensational break

I mean of course it was, but even in the context. Barely a false shot, delicious cue-ball control, and a magical positional effort on the penultimate ball. As a consequence, Jessie May Children's Hospice get £10,000, so great news there too.


He's played some absolutely rotten stuff this afternoon, and he's also cleared every ball from the table, including 15 reds and black, in gorgeous, smooth style. THIS GAME!

Wilson 3-2 Hugill (140-0)

A small kick on the yellow doesn't ruin things on the green, but the blue will take a good pot ... it goes down bt not hard enough, so he'll need to go all around the table of the pink ... AND WHAT AN ANGLE HE FINDS TO BRING IT BACK! GOOD LUCK OLD MATE!

Wilson 3-2 Hugill (120-0)

Kyren floats in a black, still slightly too hard, but the red that's a little bit harder is easily coaxed home. Black to yellow will be the key shot because the colours are on their spots ... and IT WOBBLES IN THE JAWS! But it goes down! COME ON KYREN!

Wilson 3-2 Hugill (104-0)

There are four reds left, one near the middle; he screws back off it gently but definitively, returning to the black. He's already made a 147 this season and is looking good for another.

Wilson 3-2 Hugill (81-0)

The cue-ball control has been excellent in this break, and on 65 he goes into the pack a second time, sealing the frae with a nice red. The maximum is properly on here because there's nothing too difficult on the table and the frame is secure. COME ON KYREN!

Wilson 3-2 Hugill (56-0)

This is lovely from Wilson, opening the pack a little while despatching a red. His focus has been awry today, but seven red-blacks should get him going!

Wilson 3-2 Hugill (32-0)

Oh my days, Sijun and Zifan are still at it! They started at 10 this morning! Back on our table, Kyren is in first and looks assured in potting four reds and backs...

Around the tables

Yuan SiJun 5-5 Chen Zifan

David Gilbert 2-2 Fang Zhengyi

Michael Holt 2-3 Gao Yang

Robert Milkins 3-1 Si Jiahui

Ricky Walden 6-0 Rod Lawler (finished)

Wilson 3-2 Hugill

A run of 43 gets it done amd Wilson shakes his head as well he might. He's disbursed some absolutely rancid gear today.

Wilson 3-1 Hugill (0-59)

A decent safety from Kyren earns him a shot at a red, but he jawses it leaving a tester to the middle; Ashley catches it thin, catches the near jaw, and leaves a long one for Kyren, which he misses by a fortnight. That was dreadful, and this time Ashley looks set to punish him, rolling in a starter and getting after it.

Wilson 3-1 Hugill (0-51)

He'll need more than one hit; Hugill loses position with the half-century approaching and has to play safe off the remainder of the pack. There are still six reds left on the table, and they're positioned so invitingly that you'd fancy whoever gets in next to win this one. Wilson gives up four after missing a thin contact on a safety, but doesn't leave a pot on for Hugill.

Wilson 3-1 Hugill (0-39)

A trickier than it looks plant, with the two reds a few inches apart, locates the centre of the bottom left pocket to take Hugill to 34. He's overrun position slightly, but plugs the blue into the same pocket to get the break back under control. This is a positive response from Hugill, and there's enough in the open to sort this frame in one hit.

Wilson 3-1 Hugill (0-14)

The players are back out on the baize, and Hugill strokes in a long red to the bottom right to get going in the fifth. He lands the white to close to the black to find a potting angle however, and is forced to play safe. Wilson give him another look immediately however when he misses a mid-ranger to the bottom left and leaves Hugill with a straight one to the right middle. Hugill's soon into his stride; there would be no better way to get over the disappointment of the previous frame than to mop up the load of points that look on here.

Mid-session interval

See you presently.

Around the tables

Yuan SiJun 5-5 Chen Zifan

David Gilbert 1-1 Fang Zhengyi

Michael Holt 1-2 Gao Yang

Robert Milkins 3-1 Si Jiahui

Ricky Walden 4-0 Rod Lawler

Wilson 3-1 Hugill

Wilson cleans everything before addressing the black - well he might - then down it goes, and this has been as exceedingly peculiar session, two great breaks from Wilson and some of the worst snooker you'll ever see. This game!

Wilson 2-1 Hugill (50-51)

But Hugill leaves himself a difficult brown by failing to get into the green in proper style, and he ponders taking on the pot for a while before playing safe. Next go, though, he flukes that brown and leaves himself a difficult blue ... he can't get it down, leaving Wilson a nasty one with the extension. He sees it away - that's a fantastic pressure pot - and that will surely be 3-1?!

Wilson 2-1 Hugill (45-44)

A poor safety from Hugill leaves one for Wilson, who's dynamite with the rest, and he sees that off but THEN HE GETS A KICK TRYING FOR THE GREEN! It stays out and that will almost definitely cost him the frame.

Wilson 2-1 Hugill (37-44)

Again, Hugill can't punish, and we're chasing the final red; whoever takes that will probably take the frame.

Wilson 2-1 Hugill (37-37)

But he can't male it count, applying too little side to the white and forced to take on a long red to the green pocket. He misses, and Wilson escapes; that black he missed deserved to cost him the frame. Now, though, he's a strong favourite for it, level on points and at the table with nothing out of commission. YOU WHAT! He's just missed a straight blue off its spot! I do not know, really I don't; that is about the easiest shot you'll ever see a pro botch, never mind the world finalist and world number four. What on earth is going on?!

Wilson 2-1 Hugill (13-8)

Hugill spends a while looking at a red - he doesn't like it, but eventually takes it on and misses, which gives Wilson a go. His first pot isn't great, but he redeems it with a nice blue to the green pocket and quickly gets down to the business end. While he accumulates, we learn that Matthew Stevens has tested positive for corona - that's a shame, as it is for anyone, but he was playing pretty well and will be missed. Meanwhile back on the table, Wilson goes into the pack off the black, luzzing balls everywhere ... only to miss the pot! What an oversight that is! He leaves loads, but the white is close to the side cushion making for a difficult starter ... and Hugill sees it away. The frame is at his mercy now.

Around the tables

Lyu Haotian 6-4 Soheil Vahedi (finished)

Liam Highfield 6-3 Jackson Page (finished)

Yuan SiJun 4-4 Chen Zifan

David Gilbert 1-1 Fang Zhengyi

Michael Holt 0-2 Gao Yang

Robert Milkins 1-1 Si Jiahui

Ricky Walden 3-0 Rod Lawler

Wilson 2-1 Hugill

A run of 90 resolves the frame in Wilson's favour, but Hugill had two decent chances there. On the one hand, that should give him confidence; on the other, he might've missed his opportunity.

Wilson 1-1 Hugill (41-24)

Hugill jawses a long red and leaves one for Wilson, who needs the rest to despatch it and does. He spends the first few shots pursuing it a bit, but clears the difficult balls well and now looks a cert for the frame.

Wilson 1-1 Hugill (13-24)

Tuan Sijun and Chen Zifan have been going nearly six hours for their seven frames, and if these continue potting as they just did they could make that look like nothing. But Wilson is quickly back at the table and quickly back missing regulation pots, this time the black. He holds up a hand to apologise for leaving nothing, though there's a red to the middle that might go ... but Hugill thinks not, playing safe.

Wilson 1-1 Hugill (0-1)

Hugill is into this! A careless break-off from Wilson leaves a tempter, but it's stuck away superbly and Hugill is away! He quickly goes into the pack too, but them misses a straightforward red ... only for Wilson to miss an absolute sitter! ... only for Hugill to miss one too! ... Only for Wilson to do it again, a long one over the pocket! Dearie me!

Around the tables

Lyu Haotian 5-4 Soheil Vahedi

Liam Highfield 5-3 Jackson Page

Yuan SiJun 3-4 Chen Zifan

David Gilbert 0-1 Fang Zhengyi

Michael Holt 0-1 Gao Yang

Robert Milkins 1-0 Si Jiahui

Ricky Walden 2-0 Rod Lawler

Wilson 1-1 Hugill

Nicely done by Hugill, who'll feel a lot better. Wilson might be rueing some overconfidence.

Wilson 1-0 Hugill (9-54)

But he can't take it, overhitting a red that won't go down and leaving Wilson a pleasant looking table. But he's careless with his first shot and ends up kissing a different red, unable to see the pink he's after. The resultant faff allows Hugill another go and he fights hard to make it count, chasing position when he underhits a pot but eventually catching up with it to take command. But he still has to stick a pressure pink in the green pocket with the frame in the balance, and does it nicely.

Wilson 1-0 Hugill (8-14)

Wilson looks proper ready for business, standing when Hugill is at the table. I remember one season when he was Everton manager, David Moyes always sent his players out early for the second half to let the opponents know his boys were ready, and what Wilson's saying here is that he'll be back at the table very soon. And he's in first but then runs out of position on eight, and after missing a red he should probably have left - the downside of that come on then attitude - Hugill gets to work.

Around the tables

Lyu Haotian 4-4 Soheil Vahedi

Liam Highfield 4-3 Jackson Page

Yuan SiJun 3-3 Chen Zifan

David Gilbert 0-0 Fang Zhengyi

Michael Holt 0-1 Gao Yang

Robert Milkins 0-0 Si Jiahui

Ricky Walden 1-0 Rod Lawler

Wilson 1-0 Hugill

A break of 107 gets Wilson away, smack well and truly laid down.

Wilson 0-0 Hugill (64-7)

Wilson struts about the table removing balls - he looks really confident. Looking down the morning's activity, Luca Brecel continued his decent form from last week - he's got a lot of upside, if he can improve his consistency and his game - likewise Thepchaiya Un-Nooh, who's also through.

Wilson 0-0 Hugill (18-7)

The decor in the arena is way better than before - there's a much better sense of theatre and occasion, as befits the final major of the year. Ashley leaves Kyren a long red which he drains nicely, but when he goes into the pack off the black, he brings the white back into the middle pocket. Ashley, though, misses a long pot narrowly which gives Kyren a go at an improving table, and he nails a fine red into the middle.

The players are with us

First to six, here we go!

Coming up next

We''ll be focusing on Kyren Wilson v Ashley Hugill. Hugill is ranked 126 in the world, and the longer format suits Wilson, who has longer to impose his strong tactical game. I fancy him to do well here.

Morning scores and results

  • Luca Brecel 6-2 Lei Peifan (finished)
  • Liam Highfield 4-2 Jackson Page
  • Lyu Haotian 3-4 Soheil Vahedi
  • Yuan SiJun 3-3 Chen Zifan
  • Stephen Maguire 6-1 Iulian Boiko (finished)
  • Thepchaiya Un-Nooh v Lukas Kleckers 6-2 (finished)

Afternoon all!

There's a lot to love in the world, but there's not much to love as much as weekday afternoon snooker.

Selby relieved to make second-round after White battle

Two-time UK champion Mark Selby was in a battle on day one as he finally came through a 6-4 winner against Michael White.

White was playing as an amateur but is a two-time ranking event winner and gave Selby a stern test.

Selby said: “He’s a tough player. I’ve played him at the Crucible before and only came through that 10-9. It was only two and a half years ago he was in the top 16 and winning tournaments himself. He should probably still be in the top 32 on the tour. How he fell off I’ll never know.

“I think since 2017 this is probably the best chance I’ve had coming to a Triple Crown tournament, with the way I’ve been playing. In 2018 and 2019, I wasn’t playing well enough heading into the UK Championship and didn’t believe I could win it. Whereas this year I feel I’m playing a lot better and believing I can win. Whether I do or not is a different thing.”


Morning (9am)

  • Luca Brecel v Lei Peifan
  • Liam Highfield v Jackson Page
  • Lyu Haotian v Soheil Vahedi
  • Yuan SiJun v Chen Zifan
  • Stephen Maguire v Iulian Boiko
  • Thepchaiya Un-Nooh v Lukas Kleckers

Afternoon (2pm)

  • Michael Holt v Gao Yang
  • David Gilbert v Fan Zhengyi
  • Robert Milkins v Si Jiahui
  • Ricky Walden v Rod Lawler
  • Kyren Wilson v Ashley Hugill

Evening (7pm)

  • Gary Wilson v Oliver Lines
  • Chris Wakelin v Louis Heathcote
  • Mark King v David Lilley
  • Shaun Murphy v Lee Walker
  • Matthew Stevens v Jamie Jones
'I was gutted' – Lisowski returns in style at WST Pro Series after Covid test misery
Luo Honghao and Zhou Yuelong progress at WST Pro Series
24/01/2021 AT 23:09