Ronnie O’Sullivan has suffered an emphatic exit from this year’s Ladbrokes World Grand Prix. The Rocket was no match for Neil Robertson, who breezed past the former favourite for the trophy winning four frames to one.
And his departure, coupled with Mark Selby’s First Round exit at the hands of Martin Gould, has blown the race for the trophy wide open.
Judd Trump, winner of this event back in 2015, can’t make it two Grand Prixs in three years, as he was knocked out by Barry Hawkins, the man many will now be backing to go all the way.
However, Shaun Murphy’s chances of retaining his trophy will have been given a massive boost having witnessed three of the best players on the circuit in O’Sullivan, Selby and Trump all exit the competition since he last took to the table.
The Magician will face Ryan Day in the next round, who has also impressed us this week in Preston, defeating both John Higgins and Michael White.
Victory over Day would set up a semi-final clash with either Mark King or Marco Fu, both of whom Murphy would feel confident of beating.
We mustn’t rule out our Player of the Day, Neil Robertson, though.
Many had written the Australian off as soon as they saw his potential route to the final. But with two convincing victories under his belt, and a meeting with Barry Hawkins to come, he could be set to claim his first ranking tournament win since last June’s Riga Masters.
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All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing