Phil Haigh ✍️
Mark Williams produced an absolutely immense seven frames against Jackson Page at the World Snooker Championship on Thursday, which Steve Davis reckoned was one of the best sessions anyone has ever played at the Crucible.
The three-time world champion holds a 7-1 lead over his young practice partner after winning the first seven frames of the session.
The 47-year-old knocked in breaks of 125, 74, 53, 50, 100, 75, 51 and 121 in an a break-building clinic in Sheffield.
‘Mark Williams has played astonishingly well,’ Davis told the BBC. ‘Maybe one of the best sessions of snooker anybody’s ever played here. One-sided snooker. Anybody would have lost to Mark Williams today.’
Dennis Taylor on commentary added: ‘Mark Williams was outstanding, what a session of snooker we’ve just witnessed.’
There was credit for Page, the 20-year-old protégé of Williams, who is making his debut at the Crucible this year and stunned Barry Hawkins in round one.
The youngster could do little against the barrage of scoring from the veteran, but produced an impressive clearance to win the final frame of the session, which Davis felt showed serious bottle.
‘You need great strength of character to even do that. It’s easy to totally bail out when they other guy’s playing that well,’ said Davis.
‘And you know full well that the crowd want you to pot that ball, it makes that even harder. You know the commentators are on your side and you probably don’t want that, you just want to play the game.
‘You’ve got all these things in your mind and you’re just trying to clear up, so excellent from Jackson Page.’
The two men are extremely close off the table, but Williams clearly stuck to his pre-match words, saying that he wanted to ‘destroy’ his pal.
‘Obviously, I’m going to try my best to beat him and I want to destroy him – there’s no question,’ said Williams after beating Michael White in round one.
‘I don’t like losing to anybody but, if I am going to lose to anybody and I had to pick, it would be him.
‘I’m going try my best to win but if I lose, I will have no problem at all. If it means him getting in the top 64 by beating me, I’m half on his side anyway.’
The best of 25 game plays to a conclusion on Friday.
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