Ding Junhui, competing in the Betfred World Championship qualifiers for the first time since 2007, enjoyed a comfortable 10-4 win over Greg Casey in the opening round.
Ding has won 11 ranking events but patchy form this season, including a first round defeat in the China Open, has seen him drop out of the top 16, leaving him needing three wins to reach the Crucible.
And the 29-year-old safely negotiated the first of those by beating amateur Casey with top breaks of 51, 89, 74, 99, 68, 98 and 56. He will play Ross Muir next.
Six-time World Champion Steve Davis won’t be playing at the Crucible this time as he lost 10-4 to Fergal O’Brien, whose top break was 82.
Liang Wenbo showed his quality in a 10-2 win over Joe O’Connor, firing runs of 71, 101, 52, 54, 76, 138 and 52.
Two-time Crucible finalist Ali Carter impressed in a 10-2 win over Mateusz Baranowski, compiling breaks of 70, 111, 66, 55, 130 and 64.
Shoot Out champion Robin Hull came from 5-4 down to beat Barry Pinches 10-7 while Mark Davis saw off Sheffield’s Adam Duffy by the same scoreline.
Oliver Lines joined his dad Peter in the second round by beating Lu Ning 10-5 with a top break of 104. Dominic Dale managed a top break of just 58 against Ian Glover but still managed to win 10-6.
China’s Cao Yupeng whitewashed Rodion Judin 10-0 with a top run of 94 while Mattherw Selt top scored with 108 in a 10-2 victory over Brazil’s Igor Figueiredo. Alfie Burden made a 112 in a 10-7 win over Tony Drago.