It’s last-16 time in the UK snooker championships and with pre-tournament favourite Ronnie O’Sullivan and world number one Neil Robertson in action against relative journeymen, we’re predicting smooth passage for the big guns at the Barbican.
Fresh from winning the inaugural Champion of Champions, the champion of said champions Ronny O’Sullivan has made light work of his three Barbican Centre opponents so far.
Dropping just five frames en-route to this meeting with 15th – seed Robert Milkins, the Rocket’s renewed focus looks to be paying dividends, as he goes in search of a fifth UK crown.
While the Milkman performed admirably in overcoming Matthew Stevens 6-2 in round three, this is normally the stage of major tournaments when the wheels come off the float – with a 2002 quarter-final appearance at this event remaining his best effort to date.
Furthermore, in 24 frames contested against O’Sullivan, Milkins has only taken four of them.
Neil Robertson v Joe Perry – under nine frames @ 5/4
Our pick for the tournament and current world number one, Neil Robertson, has breezed into this position, going one better than the Rocket by dropping a frame less than the Essex Exocet ahead of this tie.
This represents the third time the Australian has encountered 19th-seed Joe Perry this calendar year, and if those previous meetings are anything to go by, the cloth won’t need to be relayed in a hurry.
Over their last two meetings the Thunder from Down Under has barely broken sweat, running out a 5-2 and 5-1 winner – most recently at the Six Red World Championships in September.
Perry is a competent big match player, but against Robertson in his current mood with the cue, it’s likely to be one-way traffic in York.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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