Stevens Books Newport Spot

Home favourite Matthew Stevens secured his place in the last 64 of the BetVictor Welsh Open as he fired four breaks over 50 in a 4-1 win over Joe O’Connor.

The qualifying round runs throughout this week in Wolverhampton, with players needing to win one match to book a place at the final stages at ICC Wales in Newport. The top 16 seeds are seeded through to the final stages which run from February 28 to March 6 – for ticket details click here.

Former UK and Masters champion Stevens lost the opening frame against O’Connor but battled back to win four in a row with runs of 53, 96, 62 and 66.

In-form Jimmy Robertson, semi-finalist at last week’s Cazoo Players Championship, kept his moment going with a hard-fought 4-3 win over Peter Devlin. From 2-0 down, Robertson hit back to take four of the next five frames with top breaks of 57 and 53.

Welshman Jamie Clarke top scored with 99 in a 4-2 defeat of Farakh Ajaib, while Mark Joyce saw off Jackson Page 4-1 with a best break of 76.