In a somewhat scrappy performance on day one of the Shanghai masters, Ding managed to get himself over the line at the last moment. His opponent Scott Donaldson put on early pressure to the man playing in his native country, but failed to capitalize on Ding’s poor performance.
It wasn’t a match to earn its place in the hall of fame, but Ding will be pleased to get into the next round no doubt. As for Donaldson, I’m sure he will be disappointed in not taking advantage of an off-form Ding.
The best breaks of the match came in frames 2 and 5 for Ding, making a 73 and 60 respectfully, but this is far below par for Ding.
Going forward one can only insight building performances for the Chinese man as he gets better in subsequent rounds. In the past couple of seasons Ding has been one of the most inconsistent players on the tour but with the recent performance at the World Championships, could this be his year to dominate once again?
On the other table, John Higgins took on Matt Selt. Higgins won by 5-3 albeit quite unconvincingly with the best break from Higgins coming in frame 5, making a century. It was Selt that looked more convincing in or around the black spot, making breaks of 55, 73 and 60.
The difference between the two players was the tactical game, which was lacking slightly from Selt today and we all know how good Higgins is at his safety game.
Ricky Walden lost out to Michael White in a epic battle earlier today. Both players looks in great form, but a dodgey missed black from Walden saw him head back to pack his bag for home. There was decent break building in this match with Walden making 63, 53, 62 and 98 and Michael White making two century’s 113 and 101.
But Walden was not going home alone because Marco Fu was also sent packing. Fu seemed to be dominating the match but David Gilbert played some awesome tactical in the final few frames to take out the Hong Kong man. Breaks of 117, 115 and a 50 for Gilbert v breaks of 119, 79 and 70.
Other results from today saw Liang Wenbo winning 5-3 over Hu Hao, Yuan Sijun whitewashing Martin Gould 5-0, Michael Holt beating Xu Si and Anthony McGuill also dishing a whitewash win over Chen Zifan.
Tomorrow we will see the opening campaign for Ronnie O’Sullivan, a match everyone will be watching intently to see his form.