MARK Selby fought back from three frames behind to avoid back to back early exits in major competitions in a competitive second day of the Australian Open.
The world number two, who failed to qualify for the Wuxi Classic after a shock defeat to Andrew Pagett just six weeks ago, came back from 3-0 down in his first round encounter against Ian Burns to eventually win 5-4.
Burns, who at the end of the last season was crowned Rookie of the Year by World Snooker, looked to be on the cards for one of his biggest wins of his career when he took a 3-0 lead against the out-of-sorts Masters and UK Championship winner.
But Selby managed to kick himself back into form when he most needed to winning the next three frames. Burns regained the lead at 4-3 but was unable to finish off the Leicester who took the final two frames to book his place in the last 16.
Selby will next face Zhang Anda who on Monday reached the last 16 stage of a major ranking event for the first time with victory over Andrew Higginson.
There was not as much joy for World Championship semi-finalist Ricky Walden who suffered a surprising 5-4 defeat to Irishman Fergal O’Brien.
Shaun Murphy eased through to the next round with a convincing 5-1 win over Michael White and Joe Perry kept up his impressive start to the new season with a 5-0 whitewash victory over Xiao Guodong.
Alfie Burden booked his place into the last 16 with a 5-2 win over Michael Holt and Welshman Dominic Dale scrapped his way into the next round with a 5-4 victory over Mike Dunn.
Wednesday’s action sees the remainder of the first round matches take place and Neil Robertson will look to secure a quarter-final spot when he meets Jamie Cope.