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World Championship qualifiers: 3-13 March 2011, Sheffield

13 March 2011 No Comment

Saturday 5 March

No Grove players in action in the first qualifying section, which involves World Snooker members outside the Main Tour. However, three players were in action in the first round of the second section.

Liu Song staged a remarkable comeback in beating Michael Judge 10-8 after trailing 1-6 towards the end of the first morning. However a great run of wins

Liu Chuang had a more comfortable day’s snooker, leading 7-2 at the close of play against 2003 Scottish Open winner David Grey, who now no longer plays on the Main Tour.

Sunday 6 March

Liu Chuang finished his match against David Grey, winning 10-3 and achieving breaks of 80, 67, 74 and 68 during the match.

Zhang Anda, who reached the Crucible last year before losing to Stephen Hendry, didn’t make it any further this year losing his first round match against Andrew Pagett 6-10.

Monday 7 March

Liu Song back in action against world no 53 Adrian Gunnell, ranked 15 places above him. This was a match where both players had periods of domination. After trailing 4-5 at the end of the morning session, Song won 5 frames in a row to lead 9-5. However Adrian then took the next 4 to come back to 9-9 before Song managed to win a tense deciding frame.

Jack Lisowski made his WSC qualifiers debut in the second round today against Kuldesh Johal and trails 4-5 after the first session.

Tuesday 8 March

Liu Chuang beat six-time World finalist Jimmy White 10-9 in an epic encounter which ended at 11.10pm tonight. No one player took advantage through the match and Chuang comfortably took the crucial deciding frame to set up an early morning Thursday meeting with world no 33 Tom Ford.

Jack Lisowski took 6 of the 8 frames played today to wrap up his match against Kuldesh Johal 10-8. Snooker legend Steve Davis awaits in the next round.

Wednesday 9 March

Liu Chuang enjoyed a fantastic win against Tom Ford in the third qualifying round. Tom is ranked no 33, 36 places higher than Chuang, but Chuang showed no signs of tiredness from the previous night’s marathon as he raced into a 6-3 lead at the end of the morning session, thanks to breaks of 127, 66, 56, 71 and 91.

When the players resumed at 7pm Tom stepped up a gear to level on 8-8. Chuang then came from 55-16 down to steal the next on the colours and completed his victory by winning 60-11 in frame 18.

Liu Song had an excellent start in his third round match against world no 47 Mark Joyce, racing to a 7-2 lead after the afternoon session.

Thursday 10 March

Liu Song wrapped up his third round match against Mark Joyce 10-6 and now meets Joe Perry in the final qualifying round on Saturday.

Jack Lisowski lost an epic encounter with six-time world champion Steve Davis 9-10. Jack led 6-3 after the first session but Steve benefitted from his additional 30 years of playing experience to close the match out on the deciding frame.

Matthew Selt was involved in another very close tie, finally coming thought 10-9 against Patrick Wallace.

The weekend

Judd Trump made it through to the Crucible with a 10-4 victory over David Gilbert.

It was agonisingly close for our other three players still in the mix. Liu Chuang lost to Ryan Day 7-10 and Matthew Selt and Liu Song were both defeated by Marcus Campbell and Joe Perry respectively. Bad news for these three players but a good week’s work which saw Matt retain his top 48 status for the start of next season, and both Chuang and Song stay on the Tour with a top 64 place guaranteed.

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