Controversial O'Sullivan Races into Welsh Open Last 16
February 18, 2016 11:02
Ronnie O'Sullivan has been enjoying an emphatic week at the Welsh Open. Despite causing controversy in his first round match against Barry Pinches when he turned down the chance of a 147 and instead opted for a 146 total clearance, the Romford Rocket has only dropped one frame in three outings to reach the last 16 stage.
The Welsh Open is the longest running ranking event after the World and UK Championships and is played in front of packed crowds at the Motorpoint Arena in Cardiff, as well as being broadcast live on the BBC and Eurosport. The tournament has a really brutal schedule with all 128 players starting in the first round in Cardiff, there were no qualifiers for this event. With matches the best-of-7 frames it means there really is no room for error. One slight slip can see you kissing goodbye to the tournament.
John Higgins, the reigning champion is still fighting to defend his crown when he faces Welshman Michael White in the last 16. White will be hoping that the backing of the home crowd can lift him into the quarter-finals.
Higgins himself has also only dropped one frame on the way to the last 16. He has defeated Andy Hicks and Sam Baird 4-0 with a 4-1 win over Michael Georgiou yesterday.
Young Belgian starlet, Luca Brecel continues his excellent run of form after reaching the final of both the German Masters and the Snooker Shootout in the last two weekends. He faces a tougher test against Ding Junhui to reach the quarter finals in Cardiff.
The tie of the round in my opinion though will be Mark Selby against Mark Williams, the world number 1 will be up against a seasoned match player in front of his home crowd. The winner of this match will either play the very in form Ronnie O'Sullivan or Yu Delu in the quarters.
My last mention is that of Martin Gould, he picked up his first raning title in Germany and has reached the latter stages once again in Cardiff, as I write he is 1-0 down to Ben Woolaston.
Last 16 Draw:
John Higgins v Michael White
Mark Allen v Barry Hawkins
Luca Brecel v Ding Junhui
Marco Fu v Neil Robertson
Mark Selby v Mark Williams
Yu Delu v Ronnie O'Sullivan
Judd Trump v Joe Perry
Martin Gould v Ben Woolaston