Welsh Open Qualifiers 2010: Thepchaiya’s Triumph

Day two of the Welsh Open qualifiers and in the main almost all of the results have gone with form as the likes of Thepchaiya un-Nooh, Matt Selt, Robert Milkins, Craig Steadman, Tony Drago and Tom Ford have won again in 2009/10. The most interesting stat for me is the fact that heading into day three there are still eight players from the first round still in the tournament…

Please click here to view the updated draw.

At 4-2 down it looked as though Thepchaiya un-Nooh’s Welsh Open run would come to an end against home favourite Paul Davies but the Thai starlet was not to give up and eventually came through to win the match 5-4. Having reached the last 32 stage of this event last season Paul will be bitterly disappointed to lose at this stage but after a slow start Thepchaiya is beginning to consistently win matches and give himself a real chance of retaining his tour place at the end of the campaign. Next up for him will be Michael Judge.

Other unseeded victors included Li Hang, Craig Steadman, Matt Selt, Xiao Guodong, Anda Zhang, Bjorn Haneveer and most impressively Malta’s Tony Drago. Having made the third round of each of the three ranking event tournaments this season prior to this tournament Tony faced a tough challenge if he was to make it 4/4 as he came up against UK Championship quarter-finalist Peter Lines. Despite having won all all of his opening round matches since returning to the main tour in July 2008 however, Peter could do nothing to stop Drago as he won the last four frames of the match to secure a 5-2 victory. Many expected Tony to struggle on his return to the main tour but so far at least he has thrived at Prestatyn and won a total of eight matches up to this point. Can he finally make it into the last 48 tomorrow?

It was a mixed day for two other veterans as while Jimmy White managed to overcome Jordan Brown without too much trouble, former world champion John Parrott lost out 5-2 to Belgian number one Bjorn Haneveer. Jimmy will now meet Preston’s Ian McCulloch while Anthony Hamilton awaits Haneveer.

Norwich’s Barry Pinches has been struggling for form over the last season or so but he was able to record a useful win over Northern Ireland’s Patrick Wallace today to give his ranking position a welcome boost. Fellow SightRightUK player Tom Ford also came through against Stephen Rowlings, a player who edged a dramatic clash last night against China’s Mei Xiwen. It was not to be today though and Tom now moves forward to face Scot Jamie Burnett tomorrow.

For the day’s results in full, please click here to visit Global Snooker.