Kyren Wilson defeats Ding Jinhui in thrilling World Championship first round clash

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Kyren Wilson defeats Ding Jinhui in thrilling World Championship first round clash
Kyren Wilson defeats Ding Jinhui in thrilling World Championship first round clash

By Ben Parsons

Kyren Wilson superbly overcame Ding Junhui 10-8 in a dramatic World Championship first-round clash at the Crucible.

The match was finely poised at 8-8 with both players exchanging centuries in a high-quality affair.

But Wilson edged the decisive moments in a tense finale as Ding agonisingly went in-off from the last pink in the 17th frame.

The Warrior, 30, then made a nerveless 62 break to seal his place in the last 16.

Wilson said: “The draw was very tough and a lot of people wouldn’t want to play Ding Junhui in the first round.

“But you can’t view it that way and the win is going to set me in good stead for the rest of the tournament.

“Ding missed the pink to go 9-8 up and I made a good break in the last so I’m pleased on the whole.

“This is the best place to play as a snooker player. It suits my character and personality and when you feel good and appreciated it brings out the best in you.”

World No.5 Wilson against 14-time ranking event winner Ding is a meeting usually reserved for the latter stages of big tournaments given the calibre of both players.

But Chinese superstar Ding’s indifferent recent form combined with coronavirus issues led to his place as a Crucible qualifier after he dropped down the rankings.

And the draw set up an encounter that undoubtedly delivered as the match of the tournament so far.

Wilson remains a contender at the Sheffield showpiece and believes it’s his destiny to become champion one day.

“Every year I’m knocking on the door and every year I come here believing this is my year,” he added.

“It’s not a matter of if, it's a matter of when, so I’ll keep knocking on the door and playing good snooker.”

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