Home favourite Mark Allen suffers early Northern Ireland Open exit

There will be no home glory for Mark Allen this week.

Mark Allen. Picture by Monique Limbos

The home favourite crashed out of the Northern Ireland Open tonight losing 4-3 in a high-quality match against China’s Tian Pengfei.

It means world number seven Allen is still waiting for his first major ranking event title since winning the Players Championship more than 18 months ago.

In an entertaining second round tie, Pengfei made a brilliant break of 109 in the final frame decider to seal a place in the third round and send Allen packing his bags home.

The defeat will be a major disappointment for Allen who was keen to impress his home supporters with a good run this week.

Meanwhile, Ronnie O’Sullivan continued his quest to win back to back Home Nation events after he wasted no time in beating Duane Jones 4-0. O’Sullivan is the only player eligible to go for the £1million Home Nations bonus.

Defending champion Mark King kept his title hopes alive with a 4-1 win over Ashley Hugill and Neil Robertson did his hopes of Masters qualification no harm with a whitewash win against Billy Joe Castle.

Elsewhere, snooker favourite Jimmy White is still going strong in the competition after he beat Jak Jones 4-0 this evening to reach the last 32 stage.

Teenager Yan Bingtao recorded back to back 4-0 wins in the competition after beating Jamie Curtis-Barrett. And Newcastle’s Sam Craigie continued to make a good impression in Belfast as he followed up his brilliant win over Kyren Wilson with a 4-2 success against Ben Woollaston.

Thursday sees all the third round matches (Last 32) take place.


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