Ding suffers first-round exit at snooker China Open

Updated: 2013-03-28 10:27


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Ding suffers first-round exit at snooker China Open

Ding Junhui eyes balls during the first round at the World Snooker China Open in Beijing March 27, 2013.  [Photo/Xinhua]

BEIJING - Chinese newly crowned PTC (Players Tour Championships) champion Ding Junhui swallowed a first-round loss here on Wednesday in the World Snooker China Open.

Ding just won his sixth ranking event title at PTC Finals last week. The 25-year-old Chinese was widely hailed as favourite by the home fans. Even after the world No. 14 Hawkins surged into a 4-0 lead with breaks of 67 and 108, Ding still managed to pull back three more frames before Hawkins wrapped up the 5-3 victory with a break of 87.

"I didn't play well after the interval, if I had played well I could level the score to 4-4. It doesn't matter anymore as I will focus on preparing for the World Championships," said Ding, who came from 4-0 behind to beat Ben Woollason 5-4 in the first round at the same venue last year.

"Ding is under pressure here in Beijing, while I made a few mistakes in the beginning," said Hawkins, who will next play Stephen Maguire in the second round.

"After the interval I lost my pace but it's fortunate to win the match finally."

Mark Selby created his career's first 147 in China four years ago. The 30-year-old "Mark the Shark" could have wrested his second highest tournament break here again, but he narrowly missed the final black in the fourth frame against Mark King.

Selby started his first round show with a century of 111 and a break of 82. After he cleared all the other color balls on the table, Selby drew all eyes to the last black ball. However, even taking a deep breath before stroke, Selby could only saw the black bumped out of the pocket, with his wife Vikki Layton sighing and burying face in hands on the stand.

"I tried my best but it was a really tough shot that I just missed it," said Selby after he sealed a 5-1 triumph and set up a meeting with Ricky Walden, who knocked off "The Scar" Ken Doherty 5-2.

Left-handed Neil Robertson made a big victory in China after pocketing three runnners-up in International Championship, The Masters and the PTC Finals.

The world No. 3 edged off Jimmy Robertson 5-0 to face next Mark Allen, who ousted Antony McGill 5-1.

Mark Davis will play against starlet Jack Lisowski who stunned current world No. 1 Judd Trump 5-3 on Tuesday after he eliminated Dechawar Poomjaong at the same score.

Stuart Bingham overcame Liang Wenbo's fight-back to grab 5-3 win to play against Robert Milkins.