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Last Updated: Wednesday, 14 February 2007, 20:39 GMT
Magic Murphy sets century record
Shaun Murphy lines up a pott
Murphy outscored Cope 556-32 in the 72-minute match
Shaun Murphy set a record in his comfortable 5-0 win over Jamie Cope in the second round of the Welsh Open.

He became the first player in the 31-year history of 201 world ranking tournaments to compile four centuries in a row in a best-of-nine match.

The 2005 world champion, who won the Malta Cup earlier this month, knocked in a 135 clearance in the first frame.

The Englishman added runs of 123, 102 and 101 and also had a chance in the fifth frame but, on 31, lost position.

"That was disappointing because I wanted five on the bounce. That would've been something," said Murphy.

Even so, it is only the second time in a major event a player has recorded four successive centuries.

The last thing I wanted was to come here and fall flat on my face

Shaun Murphy

John Higgins managed a then unprecedented quartet of tons on the way to beating Ronnie O'Sullivan 9-2 in the 2005 Grand Prix final in Preston.

"I'm really proud but I'm sure the record will be beaten in years to come. Standards are improving all the time," said the Rotherham-based player.

"I went to Malta knowing that I was playing really well in practice but sorely lacking in confidence. That's not an issue now, though.

"The last thing I wanted was to come here and fall flat on my face so I couldn't be happier with the result and the way I achieved it."

Cope, outscored 556-32 in a 72-minute rout, described his opponent's snooker as "fantastic".

"That's the best anyone has ever played against me. Shaun played brilliantly and everything fell perfectly for him. He was flawless. It was good to watch."

Murphy advances to play Scottish qualifier Jamie Burnett who beat Mark Williams 5-4 to end Welsh interest in the tournament.

Peter Ebdon's hopes of ending a season as world number one for the first time were dealt a severe blow when he lost 5-4 to Dave Harold.

The UK champion was leading 4-1 but was helpless as Harold staged a superb fightback.

The turning point came in the sixth frame when Harold sank a slowly rolled red along the top cushion to embark on a 41 break and steal it on the black.

What a relief. It's been the worst run of results I've ever had

Anthony Hamilton

"Up to 4-1 Peter just didn't miss a ball. I thought it wasn't going to be my day but I finished well," he said.

Harold now plays fellow Englishman Anthony Hamilton, who ended a 10-match and 10-month losing sequence by edging out Joe Perry 5-4.

Hamilton, who has slumped from 16th to 37th on the provisional world list, appeared set for more disappointment when Perry obtained two snookers on the colours in the eighth frame before stealing it on the pink.

But Hamilton held firm with an outstanding 119 break under pressure in the ninth.

"What a relief. It's been the worst run of results I've ever had. If I'd lost today I would've been suicidal," said Hamilton.

Stephen Hendry, who has won this tournament a record three times, also progressed with a 5-2 victory over teenager Ben Woollaston.

Hendry, who closed out the contest with a 128 break, now plays Grand Prix champion Neil Robertson.

Steve Davis thrashed Dave Gilbert 5-0 and will face Graeme Dott, the world champion, in the next round.

Dott gained a 5-3 victory over Gerard Greene with a run of 114 in the final frame.

"I was waiting for over three hours to get on the table and when I did I never felt all that comfortable. Luckily the balls found the pockets," said Dott.

BBC Sport Wales coverage
24 Dec 06 |  Wales
Murphy cruises to Malta victory
04 Feb 07 |  Snooker
O'Sullivan perplexed despite win
14 Feb 07 |  Snooker
Angry Stevens crashes in Newport
13 Feb 07 |  Snooker
Perry finds form to beat Parrott
12 Feb 07 |  Snooker


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