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Page last updated at 21:40 GMT, Thursday, 5 August 2010 22:40 UK

Peter Ebdon into Shanghai Masters despite form warning

Peter Ebdon
Ebdon is currently ranked number 18 in the world

Peter Ebdon defied his own low expectations to beat Michael White 5-1 and qualify for the Shanghai Masters.

The 2002 world champion talked down his chances in a recent statement, saying his focus was on his upcoming marriage.

His warning was understood to have been made to provide bookmakers with advance notice about his prospects.

Snooker chiefs are determined for the sport to be free from suspicion, and Ebdon was making it clear why he might not play well in Sheffield.

In his statement, he said: "I would like to make it known that I consider that I will not be in a position to play to the best of my ability in my Roewe Shanghai Masters qualifying match in Sheffield.

"This is down to personal circumstances, including the fact that I am getting remarried in Hungary this weekend.

"Since playing in a recent tournament in Thailand I have not been able to practise, and by the time the qualifiers come around I will not have played for 10 days or more.

"I know just how bad I can be when I don't feel properly prepared as I am the type of player who needs to practise hard in order to play to a reasonable standard.

"As always, I will be doing my utmost to win what is a very important match for me but in truth, my levels of expectation will not be very high."

Professional snooker remains in the spotlight following the suspension of world number one John Higgins from all future tournaments, pending a tribunal, after he reportedly took a £261,000 bribe to lose frames.

Higgins has strenuously denied all allegations of wrongdoing and vowed to clear his name.

Ebdon was joined in qualifying for next month's event by fellow former world champions Steve Davis and Ken Doherty, as well as two-time Crucible finalist Matthew Stevens.

Davis raced through with a 5-0 win over Rod Lawler, while Doherty took a tight 5-4 victory against Fergal O'Brien, and Stevens beat Zhang Anda 5-2.

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see also
Ebdon drops out of world's top 16
22 Apr 10 |  Snooker
Ebdon hits out at Hearn proposals
22 Apr 10 |  Snooker
Ebdon beats Hendry to join elite
17 Dec 06 |  Snooker
Ebdon wins Crucible thriller
18 Feb 03 |  World Champs 2002
Snooker on the BBC
08 Apr 11 |  Snooker

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