Monday 21 May 2018

Jones: Beating Murphy is my best victory

A thoughtful Shaun Murphy prepares to take a shot during his first round defeat to World No 51 Jamie Jones. Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images
A thoughtful Shaun Murphy prepares to take a shot during his first round defeat to World No 51 Jamie Jones. Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images

Nick Purewal

World No 51 Jamie Jones stunned former champion Shaun Murphy with a 10-9 victory at the Crucible.

Welshman Jones dumped the 2005 winner out of the World Championship, holding his nerve to seal the deciding frame 72-1.

The 30-year-old turned the tide late yesterday afternoon with a superlative 124 break in the penultimate frame to take the match the distance.

And then the Neath native kept it together to ensure he despatched the current world number eight, booking a second-round clash with Kyren Wilson.

Jones rallied from 8-5 down to complete a remarkable comeback, adding another impressive scalp, having already beaten Liang Wenbo 10-0 in qualifying.

"I played really well in patches," Jones said. "Shaun got into his stride to go 8-5 up and I was shut out of the match.

"The 100 to go 9-9 put me on the front foot but when I missed a chance in the final frame I thought it was going to be a nightmare.

"I think it is my best victory. I have never faced pressure like I have today so I am so pleased to hold myself together and come through. It gives me loads of confidence."

Mark Allen saw off Crucible debutant Liam Highfield 10-5 to move into the second round.

The Masters champion turned his 6-3 overnight lead into a relatively straightforward victory, even though Highfield produced a 99 break in yesterday's first frame.

Allen then rattled through the next three frames, including a seventh half-century break as he secured the win.

The 32-year-old will now meet Joe Perry in the second round after the world number 22 pulled off a shock victory over defending champion Mark Selby.

"I didn't score as heavily as I would have liked but I did enough to win," Allen told the BBC.

"It was a good match even though it was not the most free-flowing. Liam pushed me all the way and there were lots of close frames."

Highfield admitted a missed brown in the second frame of the day on Monday proved the turning point in his defeat.

"The brown was really tough and, had that gone in, then maybe it would have been 6-5 and a different match," Highfield told the BBC.

Indo Sport

Sport Newsletter

The best sport action straight to your inbox every morning.

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport