EPTC2: Saturday Wrap

Click to view the latest rankings ahead of this week’s seedings revision…

It has been a long day over in Bruges but now the last 16 of this, the second event of the new European Players Tour Championship is now known…

Where else to start but with crowd favourite Jimmy White who despite exiting the tournament at the last 32 stage, gave his fans something to cheer today as he recorded an impressive 4-2 victory against reigning world champion and World Open champion Neil Robertson in the second round. Although ultimately he was to fall down against another world champion, Shaun Murphy later on in the day, he has at least ensured that he will remain ranked inside the world’s top 64 following the imminent seedings revision. While this may on the face of it not appear to be important, it does mean that he will start the UK Championship qualifiers in the second round, as opposed to right at the start.

As well as Murphy, Mark Williams, Ding Junhui and Mark Selby were the other top players to advance to the last 16 stage following victories over Liu Chuang, Stephen Hendry and Mark King respectively this evening.

Also through is Peter Ebdon who continued his recent run of improved form by winning three matches today to consolidate his place inside the top 16. He was however given a scare by amateur player Chen Ze who recovered from 3-0 down to force a deciding frame during their last 32 clash tonight. Ebdon though had already survived one decider earlier in the day against Michael Holt and was able to use his experience to good effect against his unheralded opponent.

The last match to finish tonight meanwhile was that between Matt Couch and Adrian Gunnell which eventually saw Matt take the final two frames to book his place in tomorrow’s last 16 stage. As well as continuing a reasonable start to the season for him, it ensures that he moves up into the top 64 following this week’s revision, like Jimmy meaning that he will have one less match to win in order to make it to Telford.

Stephen Hendry could not make it to tomorrow’s last 16 stage but with wins against Paul Davison and Peter Lines today he did at least get a few more points on the board as he looks to gain some momentum this season.

As far as the rankings are concerned, the sole remaining point of interest tomorrow is whether it will be Tom Ford or Mike Dunn who takes the final top 32 place, Tom needing to reach the final to move above the Redcar professional.