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Davis Beats Robertson In Thriller


Mark Davis won an epic 82-minute deciding frame on the final black to beat Neil Robertson 4-3 in the last 16 of the World Grand Prix.

Sussex cueman Davis, hoping to win a televised tournament in the UK for first time, now faces a quarter-final clash on Friday against Stuart Bingham, who beat Matthew Selt 4-2.

World number two Robertson led Davis 3-1 after breaks of 83 and 77, but Davis fought back to 3-3 with runs of 81 and 63.

The last frame featured a series of long safety battles and came down to the colours. Robertson potted brown, blue and pink, but couldn’t get position on the black. And when he left his opponent a mid-range pot to a baulk corner, Davis cracked it in to complete his fight-back.

The frame was just 11 minutes shorter than the longest ever televised frame: a 93 minute marathon between Shaun Murphy and Dave Harold at the 2008 China Open.

“It was just one of those frames which takes a long time,” said Davis, a two-time winner of the Six-Red World Championship. “It could have gone either way in the end – throughout the frame there was never a lot in it. It’s just great to win, beating Neil is tremendous. It’s got to be one of the best victories of my career.

“I was always going to take that final black on. I nearly doubled the black the shot before when it was on the cushion. I said to myself if I have a genuine pot, there’s no way I’m playing safe.”

Shanghai Masters champion Bingham took the opening frame against Selt with a break of 75, before Selt won the next two. But Basildon’s Bingham then took three in a row to book his place in the last eight.

Two-time World Champion Mark Williams followed up on last night’s 4-3 victory over Ryan Day by beating Ricky Walden 4-3. Williams trailed 3-2 but finished superbly with breaks of 84 and 78 in the last two frames.

“I had a good chance to go 3-2 up but missed a couple of easy ones,” said Williams. “I had two good breaks to finish it off and it’s always nice to do that.

“I’m not really a serious contender but I’m certainly playing a lot better than I was. I’m a game for anyone. I’m on a little roll at the moment. I know it will come to an end but I’m enjoying it while it lasts.”

Williams now plays Judd Trump, who came from 1-0 down to beat Joe Perry 4-2 with top breaks of 70, 60, 57 and 69.