Magician Proves A Pain In The Neck For Trump

November 17, 2022
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Suffering from the effects of a chronic neck injury, Shaun Murphy played “95 percent of shots in complete agony” as he came from 5-3 down to beat Judd Trump 6-5 and reach the quarter-finals of the Cazoo UK Championship.

More on that story follows

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On the other table, three-time champion Ding Junhui hammered Jamie Clarke 6-1 to set up a blockbuster quarter-final clash with Ronnie O’Sullivan on Friday at 1pm.  China’s Ding, winner of 14 ranking events, has slipped to number 38 in the world, but this week’s run will boost him back up the list as he is now guaranteed £25,000.

Ding took the opening frame with a break of 99. The second came down to the colours and Clarke went in-off when playing safe on the green, gifting his opponent a 2-0 lead. Breaks of 87 and 118 extended Ding’s advantage to 4-0 at the interval.

In frame five, Ding was on 55 when an attempted red to centre hit the far jaw, and Clarke made an impressive 55 clearance to pulled one back. He also had a scoring chance early in the sixth but made just 18 before missing a red to a corner pocket. Ding fluked a red to set a break of 67 to go 5-1 ahead. And 35-year-old Ding compiled another run of 67 in the next frame to wrap up the result.

“I know I can score well,” said Ding. “Sometimes I play a bad positional shot and that’s careless. So maybe I need to think more and keep the break going. I don’t want my top form for just one day, I’d rather be at 80 percent the whole week, that would be much better.

“It’s going to be a great match to play Ronnie. I’ll just try my best, see what happens. He’s the best player, what can I say? I want to play him more, as much as I can. Every shot I will just try to learn more and try some different things.

“There are always Chinese students in York who come and watch my games. They will be excited for tomorrow’s game so I’ll be concentrating harder.”



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