From Bangkok to Beijing: Day Four News

It has been a good morning for Jimmy White who has registered an impressive 6-4 win over former world champion Shaun Murphy today as the knockout phase gets underway in Thailand…

Beijing International Challenge

Today sees the group phase of the tournament over in Beijing come to a close and it has been business as usual for Stephen Maguire who has completed a 3-0 win over Tian Pengfei to finish top of Group B and cement his position as favourite for the event.

There he will meet Stephen Hendry who was able to finish second in Group A with a 3-1 win over Jin Long today. With all matches now completed, this means that Liang Wenbo finishes top of that group and will face Mark Allen who edged through a tight clash with Marco Fu 3-2 in the final match today. While Fu and Pengfei also finish up with one win, it is Allen who qualifies due to having won seven frames, more than either Marco or Tian.

Tomorrow’s fixtures are:

Stephen Maguire v Stephen Hendry

Liang Wenbo v Mark Allen

Sangsom 6-Red World Grand Prix

The last 32 matches have been completed today over in Thailand and the men responsible for the biggest shocks are Jimmy White, James Wattana and perhaps most impressively Mohammed Mustafa Shehab, who defeated Shaun Murphy, Joe Perry and Nigel Bond respectively.

Murphy started well against White by taking the opening frame but Jimmy then managed to rattle off four in a row including an excellent ‘maximum’ of 75 in frame three to give himself what proved to be a decisive cushion. Next up for him will be defending champion Ricky Walden who came through against Mohammed Sajjad 6-3.

Encouraging signs for James Wattana who back on the main tour will go into the new season with added confidence with a 6-3 win over Joe Perry. Awaiting him tomorrow is Ryan Day who recorded a straightforward 6-1 victory over Hong Kong’s Fung Kwok Wai.

The biggest upset however was arguably the 6-4 defeat suffered by former World Championship finalist Nigel Bond against Mohammed Mustafa Shehab. Bond actually led 3-1 at one stage but from there things began to go wrong and the man from the UAE will meet Judd Trump tomorrow at the bottom of the draw, after the man from Bristol brushed aside the challenge of Peter Ebdon today.

Other big names to advance were John Higgins who edged out Thailand’s Supoj Saenla, Mark King who continued his strong form with a win over Wael Talat, Michael Holt who defeated fellow pro Noppadol Sangnil and reigning IBSF champion Thepchaiya Un-nooh who ended the challenge of Brendan O’Donoghue.