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Page last updated at 22:02 GMT, Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Mark Williams crushes Marco Fu in Welsh Open

THE WELSH OPEN
Venue: The Newport Centre, Newport Date: 14-20 February
Coverage: Live on BBC Two Wales and British Eurosport; results and reports on BBC Sport website


Mark Williams in action at the Masters in January
Williams has returned to the form that made him a two-time world champion

Resurgent Welshman Mark Williams advanced to the last 16 of the Welsh Open by thrashing Marco Fu 4-0 in little more than an hour in Newport.

The world number three continued where he left off after winning the German Masters in Berlin two weeks ago.

He took a tight first frame despite Fu's 56 break, made 51 in the second, exactly 100 in the third before another century, 120, wrapped up victory.

World champion Neil Robertson came back from 2-0 down to beat Nigel Bond 4-2.

Bond, who made 102 in the first frame, had to pot only the black to make it 3-0 but the 45-year-old left the ball hanging over the pocket and Robertson slotted home to get himself on the board.

The missed black proved a turning point and Robertson levelled at 2-2 with a break of 81 before a faultless 130 edged him ahead at 3-2.

I think Jamie'll come out firing on all cylinders on Thursday

Williams on his next opponent Cope

Bond rattled in a 55 break in the sixth frame before Robertson cleared up with 61.

Robertson will next face Graeme Dott in a repeat of last May's World Championship final.

Dott beat fellow Scot Jamie Burnett 4-1, clinching the match on a re-spotted black after obtaining a snooker to prevent Burnett reducing his arrears to 3-2.

Williams next faces Jamie Cope, who scraped past Rory McLeod in the first round to secure a top-16 spot in the revised world rankings and an automatic place in the China Open and the World Championship.

Williams said: "It'll be a very difficult match. He struggled in the first round but you'd expect that because he's around the 16 mark.

"He was probably under pressure yesterday but he's got his points now and I think he'll come out firing on all cylinders on Thursday."

Mark Allen beat Rod Lawler 4-1 to book a second-round match with Ding Junhui.

The Northern Irishman raced into a 2-0 lead after a break of 84 in the second frame and a 59 followed as he moved within a frame of victory.

Lawler pulled one back but Allen opened up with a 58 in frame five despite a kick forcing him to miss a red and Lawler got only one of the two snookers he required.

Mark Selby had to dig deep to get past Stuart Bingham in a match which went the distance.

Selby took the opener with a 95 before missing a difficult yellow with the spider, and pinched the second with a 74 after Bingham's opening contribution ended at eight reds and eight blacks.

Bingham took the third and, with Selby's early fluency deserting him, levelled the match at 2-2.

The "Jester from Leicester" slotted in a 96 to win the next but a 77 from Bingham forced a decider.

The Basildon potter made 52 before missing a straightforward red and Selby, trailing 53-15, produced a composed clearance of 52 to win 4-3 and progress to a clash with Mark King.

Peter Ebdon came from 2-1 down to prevail 4-2 against Welshman Dominic Dale and set up a second-round clash with Ali Carter, the 2009 champion and 2010 runner-up.

The first frame had run for over half an hour before Englishman Ebdon potted a magnificent yellow and cleared the colours to pinch it.

But Dale levelled with a brilliant 139 total clearance, and a 65 in the next and a frame-clinching blue helped his edge ahead.

Ebdon drew level at 2-2 after a 63, and he powered to the finish line with a 115 break in the next before a run of 95 - after Dale had been first in with 40 - sealed victory.



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06 Feb 11 |  Snooker


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