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Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Yan Bingtao ends Mark Selby’s World Snooker Championship title defence | World Snooker Championship

Defending champion Mark Selby crashed out of the World Snooker Championship after losing his second round match to China’s Yan Bingtao.

The pair made history by engaging in the longest frame in Crucible history – lasting 85 minutes and 22 seconds – in the 22nd frame before a nerveless 112 break by Yan secured a 13-10 victory.

The pair had resumed on Saturday morning at 4-4 before Yan moved 9-7 in front ahead of their marathon concluding session. Yan will now play either Neil Robertson or Jack Lisowksi – who are level at 4-4 – in the last eight.

Ronnie O’Sullivan shrugged off two more Crucible records after winning the solitary frame he needed to polish off a 13-4 win over Mark Allen and cruise into the quarter-finals for the 20th time.

As well as eclipsing the previous best he shared with Stephen Hendry for reaching the last eight, O’Sullivan’s 71st career win also took him clear for the number of matches won by a single player at The Crucible.

Ronnie O’Sullivan during his 13-4 win against Mark Allen
Ronnie O’Sullivan eased past Mark Allen 13-4 to set up a meeting with Stephen Maguire. Photograph: Colin Poultney/ProSports/Shutterstock

Typically O’Sullivan, who is now favourite to match the Scot’s record of seven Crucible crowns next week, repeated his regular assertion that he has no interest in most of the plaudits that keep coming his way.

“It doesn’t mean anything to me,” insisted O’Sullivan. “They’re not the kinds of statistics that I’m proud of. The ones that I’m proud of are the majors and that’s about it really.”

O’Sullivan will face Stephen Maguire in the quarter-finals after the 41-year-old Scot made the most of a borrowed cue to withstand a fightback from UK champion Zhao Xintong.

Maguire resumed the final session of their match two frames from victory but lost four of the first five on Saturday before a break of 59 saw him seal a 13-9 win over the Chinese seventh seed.

Maguire, a two-time semi-finalist who has plummeted to 40 in the current world rankings, revealed he took drastic measures after being distinctly unimpressed with his form during a gruelling first-round win over Shaun Murphy.

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Maguire, who is guaranteed at least 50,000 by reaching the last eight, said: “When I played Shaun I was rubbish and Shaun was even worse, so I went back up to Glasgow and made my mind up that I wasn’t coming back with that cue because I felt like I had no chance. I borrowed my mate’s cue and had a couple of days of practice with it and liked it and it has seemed to pay off. I’ll ask my mate how much he wants for it – hopefully not a lot.”

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