Stuart Bingham was eventually successful in disarming a 16-year-old who had troubled him all night. Bingham came through a tough spell, turning the game on its head and finishing with a 6-4 victory. The turning point came when the scores were levelled at 4-4, with the former world champions bouncing back from a 61-0 down to make a 62 clearance. He then added the next frame to book a suit in round two of the Championship.
For the most part, Bingham hasn’t been too lucky in this tournament. Indeed, he has been one frame away from the final of the UK Championship on three separate occasions.
Three-time UK Championship winner, John Higgins was one of the very few star attractions in the opening games in New York and he suited quite the narrative with his performances.
The living legend quickly made it 3-0 over Peter Lines It’s a carnival ofwhitewashing victories and Matthew Stevens deservedly got a stand in th4 carnival. Just like Robertson and Ali Carter had done, Stevens left no margin for error as he annihilated Chen Feilong by a 6-0 scoreline.
Demolition, destruction and annihilation is a modest summary of what transpired in the game. Matthew Steven’s showed his power, strength and technique, dominating the game right from the very start. The last time he lifted the crown was as far back as 2003 when he defeated Stephen Hendry in the finals. He would be looking to have a second UK Championship trophy shelved conspicuously in his medal room.
Elsewhere, James Cahill booked a spot in round two of the event. Cahill seems to like playing in New York. He definitely doesn’t shy away from taking out even the toughest names on paper whilst playing in New York. He saw out Ding Junhui in 2004 and Mark Selby last year.
A determined Cahill would not let anything stop him in its chase of the UK championship, not even David Gilbert. He ensured a fantastic 6-4 win with a break of 130 along the way.
John Huggins also came out tops in his match-up against Peter Lines, his first win over this same opponent in 25 years.
Written by: Roland Arum