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World Snooker Championship updates - Kurt Maflin beats John Higgins in thriller

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Maflin-Higgins | Snooker | ESP Player Feature

Image credit: Eurosport

10 hours ago | Updated 6 hours ago

World Snooker Championship live - all the latest updates, scores and results from The Crucible as the biggest snooker tournament on the calendar takes place after a delay due to the coronavirus pandemic.

22:25 - Goodnight

World Championship

World Snooker Championship: Latest draw, schedule and results


What a match that was, superb quality and drama.

There should be more in store tomorrow too with Judd Trump trailing Yan Bingtao and Mark Williams and Stuart Bingham locked at 8-8.

Hope to see you then!

22:20 - Higgins 11-13 Maflin

What a win for Kurt Maflin.

He gets another chance after his missed red and this time he finishes up to shock Higgins and reach the quarter-finals, where he will face Anthony McGill or Jamie Clarke.

22:15 - Higgins 11-12 Maflin

This is tense. Maflin was two pots from victory but missed a red to the middle and now it's game on...

22:00 - Higgins 11-12 Maflin

A big, big frame for Maflin, who is playing much better now.

He's helped by a bad miss from Higgins on a red into the corner and takes advantage with a break of 75 to close on victory.

21:50 - Higgins 11-11 Maflin, Selby 8-8 Noppon

It's all finished for the evening between Selby and Noppon and they go in level.

Noppon will be kicking himself though as he was 21-0 ahead and missed a routine red to the corner to let Selby in.

21:45 - Higgins 11-11 Maflin, Selby 7-8 Noppon

A much-needed frame for Maflin.

He has to dig in after giving away 16 points in fouls for missing a brown off four cushions on several occasions, but he comes through and finishes nicely to get a bit of rhythm back.

It's best of three now.

21:25 - Higgins 11-10 Maflin, Selby 7-8 Noppon

Is this match slipping away from Maflin?

He loses a third frame in a row to fall behind against Higgins, who needs two more for victory.

Noppon has just made a 105 break, with some excellent long shots, to retake the lead against Selby.

21:10 - Higgins 10-10 Maflin, Selby 7-7 Noppon

A break of 83 sees Selby level it up again against Noppon.

Here's some mid-session thoughts from Jimmy White, who is impressed with John Higgins.

20:55 - Higgins 10-10 Maflin, Selby 6-7 Noppon

These matches are as close as they come at the moment.

Higgins is looking much improved and is now back on level terms against Maflin while Noppon has stopped Selby from winning a fourth frame in a row.

We could be in for a cracking finish this evening in Higgins vs Maflin.

20:30 - Higgins 9-10 Maflin, Selby 6-6 Noppon

Will this be one that Maflin regrets?

He is 43-0 ahead but underhits a red to the middle and leaves it over the pocket. Higgins pounces and cleans up, including a nice double (see below), to take the frame and close the gap to one.

On the other table, Noppon has got his first frame of the evening session to level against Selby.

20:05 - Higgins 8-10 Maflin, Selby 6-5 Noppon

There's momentum building in both matches.

Maflin has started well against Higgins and now leads by two frames, with three more needed for him to clinch victory.

Selby is also looking good and has just won a third frame in a row with a fine break of 120 to now lead 6-5.

World Snooker Championship: Mark Selby makes 120 break against Noppon Saengkham


19:55 - Selby 5-5 Noppon

After losing four in a row to finish the first session, Selby has won two in a row to start this session. He's back on level terms.

19:30 - Higgins 8-9 Maflin

Maflin moves ahead in the match as he takes the 17th frame.

Jimmy White is enjoying this one...

19:20 - Selby 4-5 Noppon

Just what was needed from Selby to start the session as a break of 76 helps him pull one frame behind.

Snooker coach Chris Henry has been working with Selby at the World Snooker Championship and told The Break podcast about trying to "rewire" the three-time champion.

Have a read of the full story here. or listen to the podcast here.

18:55 - Next up: Higgins v Maflin, Selby v Noppon

Here's your evening menu:

  • John Higgins v Kurt Maflin (8-8)
  • Mark Selby v Noppon Saengkham (3-5)

Boot up Eurosport 1, Eurosport 2 or Eurosport Player to watch at home, or alternatively stick around here for live text updates as the night unfolds!

17:55 - Williams 8-8 Bingham, Trump 3-5 Yan: End of session

These topsy-turvy matches are quite gripping.

Mark Williams blows a chance to clear up, inviting Stuart Bingham to level at the end of the session, before Trump ends a run of four winless frames to stay within touching distance.

That's it for now - we'll be back in an hour with the finish of John Higgins v Kurt Maflin (8-8) and the second session of Mark Selby v Noppon Saengkham (3-5).

17:29 - Williams 8-7 Bingham, Trump 2-5 Yan

Brilliant recovery from Williams to re-take the lead... but it's the other table where all the drama is happening.

Yan Bingtao has a three-frame advantage over Trump and had a century snatched away after inadvertently potting a brown after hitting 100.

17:14 - Trump 2-4 Yan: Bingtao opens two-frame lead

"Judd Trump has one or two problems on his hands against a player who has previously caused him no trouble at all."

Phillip Studd on commentary sums it up neatly. Is it time for Trump to start getting worried?

17:09 - Williams 7-7 Bingham

How crucial could that prove? A long pink from Bingham finds the jaws of the pocket, allowing Williams to return to a tricky table. The Welsh Potting Machine rises to the challenge, ending a dismal run on the green baize, and we're level again.

16:55 - Trump 2-3 Yan

A poor safety shot from Trump leaves Yan in amongst the reds and the Chinese 20-year-old duly races to a break of 91 to take the frame in one visit.

Remember: these two have met five times and Trump has won them all.

16:49 - Williams 6-7 Bingham: New leader

The frame ends with a whimper as Bingham fails with a poor double attempt, but his break of 76 is enough to edge him ahead in this contest.

FOUR frames on the spin now for Mr Winner Winner Chicken Dinner (aka the 2015 world champion).

16:22 - Trump 2-2 Yan: All square again

A real steal from Yan as he returns to the table to clinch the fourth frame on the final black. It started so well for Trump, sinking a long red to open the scoring, but he went astray with a plant shot, inviting Yan back into the frame.

We're all square going into the interval.

16:15 - Williams 6-6 Bingham: Bingham on a roll

"Stuart Bingham would like to stay out there, he's on a roll!"

The Eurosport commentary box is getting very excited as Bingham levels with his third frame on the spin. It's time for the interval. Williams needed it.

15:58 - Trump 2-1 Yan: Trump retakes the lead

It's now Trump's turn to take a frame against Yan. While Yan cleared the table, both of Trump's frames have come with more piecemeal effort. It's a warning sign for Trump, who has not been at his best this year. It's not quite the curse of the Crucible, but it's a rut he needs to kick himself out of - there are plenty of players in form right now. Trump's highest break today is just 36.

Meanwhile, Bingham moves to 5-6 behind Williams.

Yan Bingtao makes 133 total clearance at World Snooker Championship


15:32 - Trump 1-1 Yan: The day's second clearance

Not quite as impressive as John Higgins' 147 earlier today, but perhaps no less technically impressive. Yan clears the table to level the frame with a break of 133 to clear the table.

15:26 - Williams 6-4 Bingham: Bingham grabs a century

Bingham pulls in Williams to cut the lead to two. The Englishman grabs a 115 break to leave him within touching distance of the former World Champion.

15:17 - Trump 1-0 Yan: Trump draws first blood

After almost forty minutes of play there is finally some kind of movement in the match between Trump and Yan. Some extended safety play follows a scrappy, attritional opening.

Yan leaves Trump with a fairly easy red which he uses to set up a snooker, and once he sinks a red and a black he has an unassailable lead. 75-35 is the final score, but that doesn't betray how close Yan might have been had he got in.

15:07 - Williams 6-3 Bingham: Williams edges ahead

There's also less than electric action in the other game for today. Williams is 6-3 up after the first frame in the second session. 65-51 to Williams, with no big break from either player. They are both still looking for their groove.

14:55 - Trump 0-0 Yan: Tepid opening

Trump and Yan continue their opening frame, and there's little to report. It's 25-23 to Yan, and after a scrappy opening, Yan now has a chance to sink a long pot.

14:20 - Trump v Yan, Williams 5-3 Bingham

Right, we're soon underway again in the afternoon session.

13:20 - Selby 3-5 Saengkham: Selby in trouble

There's an uspet on the cards here. Saengkham is going into the next session with a two-frame advantage. His break of 50 is enough to secure a 61-48 win in the last frame, leaving the pre-game favourite Trump in danger of being knowed out.

13:01 - Higgins 8-8 Maflin: All square

An excellent comeback from Higgins, but it's far from over in this match. The session ends when Higgins, 60-odd down, has the minerals to hit 63 and take the frame 71-66. He was trailing 5-3 this morning and hit a maximum on the way.

The third session promises to be a nailbiter.

12:39 - Selby 3-4: Saengkham: Saengkham fights back

This excellent match refuses to give any hint over who will untimately win. The qualifier gets a break of 64, and as Selby attempts to retake the lead he leaves an easy green on for Saengkham, and concedes the penultimate frame of the session.

It's just as tight between Higgins and Maflin. Higgins is now 7-8 behind with a 71-0 lead with no reponse from Maflin. Here, meanwhile, is the full video of the 147:

147 in full: Watch John Higgins' stunning World Snooker Championship maximum


12:24 - Selby 3-3 Saengkham: Everyone is hitting centuries

Now Saengkham is scoring. He levels the frames with a brilliant effort of his own, with the second highest break of the day with 122.

Maflin, meanwhile, just loses out to Higgins 66-57, but then hits an unanswered 81 to secure a 6-8 lead. He has not been cowed by Higgins' form and is maintaining his own to keep his opponent at arm's length.

12:09 - Higgins' maximum

Watch John Higgins clinch 'fantastic' 147 to make history at World Snooker Championship


Read our story on Higgins' brilliant maximum here.

11:55 - Selby 3-2 Saengkham

Higgins and Maflin are now back at the table.

Selby cedes the first frame after the restart to Saengkham. Saengkham makes his highest break of the match with a score of 76. Selby can only muster 13 from his side, and the Englishman misses and early red to give his opponent the chance to get a decent score on the board if he can deal with some awkward reds.

11:36: Higgins 5-7 Maflin: Higgins hits 147!

Brilliance from Higgins. He wins the frame to cut the deficit to 5-7, but there is so much more to this.

Higgins grabs his first Cruciclbe 147, the last before the session breaks up. That is one of a handful of Crucible maximums - only the 11th, ever - and a warning to Maflin that he is up against a world class player.

11:22 - Selby 3-1 Saengkham: Selby goes into mid-session interval 3-1 up

Saengkham will wonder what he's done wrong here. He started well but Selby just got better with every frame. After getting close a few times now, Selby just gets his century with a break of 102.

The pair go into a mid-session interval now, but Selby's opponent will help that pause puts him off his stride.

11:10 - Selby 2-1 Saengkham: Selby extends lead

Selby's recovery continues and he now moves two frames in front. He hits 70 on his way to a total of 80. He has threatened now to get a century but has not yet been able to convert, this time falling on the brown.

The fourth frame starts with an exchange of safety players, with Saengkham left with the ball behind the yellow.

On the other table, it's 6-4 to Kurt Maflin.

10:53 - Selby 2-1 Saengkham: Selby in front

An impressive break of 84 gives Selby a 92-0 win in the third frame, as he moves into a 2-1 lead. That early scare might be it.

Saengkham is 7-2 up now in the fourth frame, but he sinks a long pot, rattling into the jaws, and he's onto the low-scoring colours now in the early stage of his break.

10:33 - Selby falls behind

Woof. On the other table, Saengkham takes the first frame against Selby. It's only one frame, with 24 still left to play if needed. His opponent grabs a break of 70 to score 71 in total to his opponent's 44.

Selby is back at it in the second frame though, as he starts an attack on a favourably-spread bunch of reds. He's already 24-0 up with low-hanging fruit left.

10:25 - Higgins fighting back

John Higgins gets 33 and 44 on his way to a total of 91. That's enough to keep Maflin in his seat for the first frame, and the deficit is now down to a single frame.

5-4 after the first frame in today's morning session. Nothing doing in the day's other game for now.

10:00 - Listen to the Eurosport podcast!

As we prepare for another day of Crucible action, take time to listen to The Break, Eurosport's snooker podcast!

We've got two matches to keep track of this morning.

There's John Higgins and Kurt Maflin, who will resume their match from the overnight pause. Maflin leads 5-3 and while the Norwegian has been steadily establishing himself on the tour but this would still be a big upset so early in the tournament.

It's early yet, and plenty of frames for Higgins to pull back what is only a two-frame deficit but the Scot will want to make sure he doesn't fall back any further behind.


21:42 - Bingham stems the tide

Stuart Bingham has arrested the flow of frames against him, taking the eighth to reduce the arrears to 5-3 overnight. A big day ahead tomorrow!

21:30 - Williams in control

Stuart Bingham hasn't won a frame since he missed that routine black before the mid-session interval. Williams has rattled off four straight frames, leads 5-2 and is now guaranteed an overnight lead.

21:05 - Mark Williams rolls on

The Welshman is in the mood now. He produces another big break - 90 this time - and is two frames ahead, with two frames left to play in the session.

20:55 - Williams moves ahead

Williams produces the biggest break of the match, 97. Ironically he misses a routine pot on the black, which would have given him the century, but he's moved ahead and has the wind in his sails.

20:25 - Drama as Williams hits back

Stuart Bingham has plenty to think about as the two players head into the mid-session break. With a seven point lead, he misses a routine pot on the back, allowing Williams to draw level. The black is respotted with the scores at 57-57 and a double kiss gives the veteran the chance to take the frame, which he does. It's 2-2 at the break!

"Mark Williams will be delighted to be two each because he's not settled at all," says Jimmy White on Eurosport 1.

Meanwhile, Martin Gould has beaten Stephen Maguire 10-3 to complete the round of 32...

19:50 - Bingham hits back

The reigning Masters Champion gets his hand on the table to construct a break of 50 that was enough to level the match at one frame each against Williams, who earlier this week told The Break podcast he has decided he is never retiring from snooker.

Perhaps the main event in a few minutes is Mark Selby's appearance. He'll take on Noppon Saengkham of Thailand. Like Maflin he is an impressive player despite being down the ranking comapred to his opponent, and the Leicester man will have to be on his game if he's to avoid a slip-up here.

Later one we have Judd Trump against Yan Bingteo, in what coud be the tie of the round, and Mark Williams is due on to face Stuart Bingham. The former World Chapmions has a 5-3 lead over the Englishman.

Remember you can watch it all live on Eurosport 1 & 2 and the Eurosport Player!

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04/08/2020 AT 14:06
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