JOE PERRY showed the Crucible crowd why he is enjoying his best season on tour after gaining an overnight 5-3 lead against Ronnie O’Sullivan.
Gentleman Joe, as he is nicknamed, put on an impressive display in the first session of the second round tie against the defending champion and left the Sheffield venue with a deserved lead as O’Sullivan struggled early on missing chances he normally pots with ease.
Perry, who won his first career silverware at the start of the campaign with victory at an Asian PTC event, took the first frame scoring more than 100 points before O’Sullivan responded with a break of 58.
A break of 57 helped Perry regain the lead before a cracking long red set up a break of 82 as he went into the mid-session interval 3-1 up.
The restart saw Perry extend his lead to three frames when O’Sullivan missed a tricky red down the side cushion.
But when Perry’s long shot on a red failed to reach its target it allowed O’Sullvan the perfect opportunity to find some rhythm. He did so with a break of 117.
And there were more sins ‘Sullivan was finding his form when a break f 75 helped him reduce his deficit to 4-3.
But Perry ensured an overnight lead with an impressive break off 99 to close the opening session. Remarkably, O’Sullivan’s long pot success rate was less than 30 per cent in the whole session
The match resumes for its second session on Friday afternoon starting at 2.30pm.
Meanwhile, world number one Neil Robertson only needed 50 minutes to book his place in the last 16 after beating debutant Robbie Williams 10-2.
The Australian, winner of this event in 2010, won the three remaining frames to clinch a convincing win and during the process hit two centuries.
Robertson now goes into his second round match against Mark Allen needing just three more centuries to become the first ever player to 100 ton breaks in a single season.
World Championship 2014 – Round 2 Draw
Ronnie O’SULLIVAN vs Joe PERRY
Shaun MURPHY vs Marco FU
Barry HAWKINS vs Ricky WALDEN
Dominic DALE vs Michael WASLEY
Mark SELBY vs Ali CARTER
Alan McMANUS vs Ken DOHERTY
Judd TRUMP vs Ryan DAY
Mark ALLEN vs Neil ROBERTSON