O’Sullivan to continue dominance over Milkins at the Masters

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The third day of the snooker Masters at Alexandra Palace sees two of the game’s sharpest cue smiths take to the floor.

Ding Junhui, the fourth seed and 13/2 shot for tournament glory, and Ronnie O’Sullivan, who is the 5/2 favourite for the tournament with Ladbrokes despite only being the second seed, are in action with both matches given the preview treatment below:

Ding Junhui v Shaun Murphy

26-year-old Ding enjoyed a fruitful 2013, winning three tournaments and finishing the season ranked as the 10th best player in the world.

He’s also had some success in this particular tournament, reigning supreme in the 2011 rendition and finishing as runner up four years earlier.

Shaun Murphy stands in the Chinese’s way to progressing to the quarter finals and will be buoyed by his head-to-head record over his first-round opponent, which he leads nine games to eight with one draw.

However, it was Ding who prevailed in the pair’s only previous Masters meeting to date and Murphy comes in to the tournament having failed to reach a single final last season, making the 1/2 on Ding the way to go.

Ronnie O’Sullivan v Robert Milkins

It’s Rocket Ronnie who has the task of entertaining the evening Ally Pally crowd, when he does battle with The Milkman at 19:00.

Backing the four-time Masters champion to succeed here certainly won’t get you rich quick at odds of 1/7, with Milkins a lengthy 9/2 shot for victory in comparison.

However, a quick glance at the pair’s recent meetings points to a far more valuable punt that’s available in the handicap market.

O’Sullivan has won three of his four career meetings with Milkins, and none of them came by a fewer margin than four frames.

It’s therefore nailed on that the defending world champion overhauls a 3.5 frame Milkins head-start to win at odds of 6/5.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.