Shanghai Masters Qualifiers 2009: Day One Results

So after all the build-up and all the tournaments this summer, the new ranking event season is finally upon us and already the shocks are coming in. Click below to read the results as they come in throughout the day or here to follow the live scores over at Global Snooker…

Morning Session

First man through to the second round is Malta’s Tony Drago who progresses without having to pot a ball at the expense of the unfortunate Li Hang. As has happened in the past, visa problems have interfered with the draw and this means that both Li and Mei Xiwen (who was scheduled to play this afternoon), have been unable to get to Prestatyn to play their matches today.

While this is a shame both for Li and snooker itself as this looked to be one of the most interesting ties of the day given Li’s form last year and Tony’s pedigree, I imagine that Drago will just be delighted to be in the next round with an extra 630 ranking points under his belt. Awaiting him there will be young Irishman David Morris however and this will not be a straightforward match for him.

Tony’s progress may have been as simple as it could have been but it was the exact opposite for Xiao Guodong who managed to defeat reigning IBSF champion Thepchaiya un-Nooh in a high quality match. It was a tight contest throughout but with breaks of 118, 113 and 81 it was Xiao’s superior scoring that looks to have made the difference and booked him an interesting second round tie with Rod Lawler tomorrow morning.

Given Xiao’s greater experience at this level it is an impressive debut from Thepchaiya, but ultimately not a good start to his season as with only six ranking events on the calendar, it would have been nice to get some extra ranking points in the bank as he looks to retain his place on the main tour. Still, plenty of time to go of course, indeed it is only the first day of the season!

Having worked so hard to get onto the main tour it must have felt good for Craig Steadman to finally play his first professional match today and he will be even happier now that he has won it with a 5-2 success over young Zhang Anda from China. It was his opponent who actually took the opener but from there Craig managed to win five of the next six frames to book a tie with Robert Milkins in the second round. Hopefully this will be the first of many wins for Steadman this season.

Not such a good day for two of the three WPBSA wildcards in action this morning however as both David Gray and Ian Preece slipped to defeats against Bjorn Haneveer and Daniel Wells respectively. It was an impressive performance from Haneveer who is back on the main tour again and with breaks of 105, 75, 60, 45 and 37 showed that he is not here to make up the numbers on his way to a comfortable 5-1 win. Considering that he suffered a broken shoulder over the summer, it is an even better win and next up for him will be a clash with Jimmy White tomorrow.

Wells meanwhile managed to repeat his win over Preece in the World Championship qualifiers earlier this year to set up a tie with Joe Delaney in the second round. I like both players but I wish Dan all the best as it would be great to see a promising young player such as himself make it to the TV stages of an event for the first time.

For Preece it is not a good start to what is a second chance for him following the decision to award him one of the wildcard spots, but according to Janie Watkins over at Global Snooker he is currently suffering from a ‘mystery stomach complaint’ and is currently waiting for an operation. Hopefully he will be ok and back to his best soon.

Match 01 – Daniel Wells 5-3 Ian Preece
19-96(50), 116(51,65)-1, 34-72, 88(82)-1, 64(43)-7, 99(99)-0, 59(54)-68(61), 56(45)-27
Match 02 – Li Hang 0-5 (walkover) Tony Drago
Match 03 – Chris Norbury 2-5 Brendan O’Donoghue
8-85, 61-90, 58-24, 42-60, 79-22
Match 04 – Bjorn Haneveer 5-1 David Gray
76(45)-47, 70-22, 50-68, 66(60)-51(37), 105(105)-26, 76(75)-1
Match 05 – Atthasit Mahitthi 3-5 Joe Jogia
91-34, 49-68, 39-55, 70(67)-41, 0-77, 84(83)-27, 21-64
Match 06 – Craig Steadman 5-2 Anda Zhang
24-62, 80(34,38)-5, 109(63)-1, 65-30, 59(49)-9, 1-86(41,45), 64(35)-46
Match 07 – Xiao Guodong 5-4 Thepchaiya Un Nooh
61-42, 14-87(87), 53-64(40), 124(118)-2, 127(113)-0, 62-39, 9-67(56), 58(42)-60, 81(81)-0
Match 08 – Simon Bedford 5-3 David Hogan
75-38, 61-26, 58-70, 1-82

Afternoon Session

First man through this afternoon (well apart from Matt Couch who is the beneficiary of Mei Xiwen’s visa issues), is Lee Spick who ended the hopes of another tour wildcard Andrew Norman with a comprehensive victory. Having finished last season with a great run at the World Championship to reach the final qualifying round with the aid of some big breaks, Lee picked up where he left off today with runs of 96, 92 and 75 to move into the second round where he will face Leicester’s Tom Ford.

Soon to join him was Welsh youngster Michael White who having been forced to miss the qualifiers for this event two years ago due to his age, will be pleased to have got his season off to a better start this time around. Like Spick he managed to score well today and thanks to breaks of 92, 82, 72 and 64, completed a 5-2 win over PIOS qualifier Lee Page. Next up for him will be a clash with a man who managed to win the World Championship before he was even born, John Parrott.

The most exciting match of the session however was the battle of the Northern Irishmen as former World Championship quarter-finalist Patrick Wallace edged past tour newcomer Jordan Brown as the latter came agonisingly close to notching a notable debut win.

Following breaks of 129 and 55, plus four other breaks over 30, it was Jordan who led 3-1 at the interval before Wallace hit back to take the next two. From there the pair exchanged centuries (120 for Jordan and 115 for Patrick), to force a decider and perhaps predictably in this situation it was the more experienced player who came through as Patrick won by just a single point to book his second round place.

A relief for Patrick who now goes on to face Paul Davies tomorrow afternoon, but a promising showing for Brown nevertheless, particularly after the heavy defeat he suffered in the first round of the Pro Challenge event last week to Craig Steadman.

The final match to finish tonight also went to a decider and saw Pro Challenge semi-finalist Ben Woollaston come through against Sam Baird, the man who defeated Jamie Cope last week in Leeds.

From the frame scores available it appears as though the match was not as high scoring as the Wallace/Brown match but it was just as close and Ben will be delighted to secure what is an important win. Tomorrow evening he plays Peter Lines in what is a hard match to call…

Match 09 – Stephen Rowlings 2-5 Jimmy Robertson
40(34)-60, 28-61(41), 25-74(68), 77(71)-0, 77(56)-8, 0-103(77), 48-69(42)
Match 10 – Mathew Couch 5-0 (walkover) Mei Xiwen
Match 11 – Lee Spick 5-1 Andrew Norman
71-44(35), 62-51, 96(92)-1, 80(75)-30, 0-87(81), 96(96)-0
Match 12 – Lee Page 2-5 Michael White
35-67(64), 10-73(72), 0-82(82), 62(49)-13, 0-92(92), 71(35)-31, 1-92(44)
Match 13 – Ben Woollaston 5-4 Sam Baird
56-66, 27-77, 70-25, 75-17, 71-47
Match 14 – Patrick Wallace 5-4 Jordan Brown
12-107(45,36), 79(41,38)-21, 0-130(129), 11-104(55), 101(82)-0, 78-20, 5-121(120), 123(115)-14, 56-55
Match 15 – Noppadol Sangnil 5-2 James Wattana
11-75, 67-40, 84-6, 27-66, 60(48)-13, 76(76)-3, 59(38)-10
Match 16 – Matthew Selt 5-2 Mark Boyle
100-36, 34-71(60), 74-36, 102(85)-8, 72(38)-10, 31-62(50), 72(52)-38