Alan McManus has swept aside Australia’s Kurt Dunham with a 10-1 win in the first round of Betfred World Championship qualifying.
Ponds Forge is a place which McManus clearly enjoys, he holds a 100% record at the Sheffield venue. The Scot has had difficulties with a back injury this season, but he is now hoping to end his season on a high and replicate his run from the qualifiers to a Crucible semi-final last year.
Yesterday there were several drawn out frames which resulted in the first session being curtailed, with McManus 5-1 ahead. This afternoon the match was played at a quicker pace and it was the 1994 Masters Champion who dominated. He made breaks of 65, 44, 64 and 52 on his way to a routine victory.
“I had to win about six matches to get through to play Ding last year and we both came from here, it just shows you what can be done,” said the two-time ranking winner. “For a lot of players this week they look at both of us going deep last year and it shows it is possible. I’ve always said, be tired after the event and not during it. I have a couple of tough matches left to play, but I kind of enjoy the battle. If I get enough practice in then I’m going to be tough to beat.”
2006 World Champion Graeme Dott came through a 10-3 winner over Alan Taylor to reach round two. Defeat for Taylor sees him lose his tour card and drop off the tour.
Oliver Lines won six out of the last seven frames to inflict a 10-6 defeat on Welshman Duane Jones. Oliver joins his dad Peter in the second round, who won a 10-9 thriller against Thepchaiya Un Nooh on Thursday.
Fergal O’Brien made a charge to the line to come back and defeat Northern Ireland’s Gerard Greene. O’Brien compiled breaks of 60 and 130 on his way to winning six frames in a row to win 10-6 from 6-5 down.