PTC8: Friday Round-Up

After that unheard of event last week of a week off, this weekend sees normal service resumed with the PTC8 event staged in Killarney and already the likes of Ronnie O’Sullivan, Mark Williams and Stephen Hendry have been sent crashing out of the tournament. Click below for a summary of Friday’s main stories…

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Last man through to the final 16 last night was PTC3 winner Ben Woollaston as the man from Leicester completed a tremendous comeback from 3-1 down and snookers required to defeat Tom Ford in a deciding frame. Having already seen off Liam Highfield and Liang Wenbo in similarly tight previous round matches, Ben now moves into the final day of a PTC for the third time this season.

There he will face Thailand’s Dechawat Poomjaeng after the tour newcomer impressed with victories against Jordan Brown, Stephen Hendry and Stephen Maguire. For Maguire his defeat came after a good comeback against Dominic Dale in the second round while Hendry had defeated amateur player Robbie Williams before suffering a 4-1 defeat to Poomjaeng.

Another big name to crash out early on was Mark Williams whose lacklustre run in the PTC events this season continued with a 4-2 defeat to James Wattana. After eight PTC events Mark has just two victories to his name and will surely be struggling now to make it to the Grand Finals next year.

Similarly Ronnie O’Sullivan was also to fall against China’s Xiao Guodong, though not before he had completed a 4-0 victory against India’s Aditya Mehta to bag a useful 360 ranking points with his top 16 place still far from secure looking ahead to the next cut-off. For Xiao, another player who incidentally has criticised the PTC events during the last week, it was a good win as the youngster looks to push on up into the top 48. Despite that however he was not to make it through to the last 16, losing 4-2 to a resurgent Gerard Greene late on Friday evening.

Next up for Gerard will be a clash with reigning world champion John Higgins after the Scot eased through with victories against Ian Burns, Nigel Bond and Ashley Wright, the latter having made a good impression with victories against Marcus Campbell and Passakorn Suwannawat earlier in the day.

Also through impressively was Mark Allen, the Northern Irishman dropping just one frame in dispatching David Gilbert, Mike Dunn and Paul Davison to set up a tie with Welshman Ryan Day. Martin Gould meanwhile also enjoyed an excellent run, recording three centuries during his three matches to progress to a last 16 match with 2010 world champion Neil Robertson who of course recorded that famous 13-12 victory from 11-5 down against Martin on the way to his Crucible triumph.