MARCO FU recovered from 2-1 down to beat Chris Norbury 4-2 and reach the second round of the BetVictor Welsh Open in Newport on Saturday.

Norbury had cleared with 47 to snatch the third frame and threaten an upset but Fu made a 39 clearance to secure the fourth.

Hong Kong’s Fu, who won this season’s Australian Goldfields Open, then controlled the next two frames to book his place in the last 64 as the top seeds continued to dominate in Newport.

“I’m a little relieved. Best of seven is anyone’s game and a two frame swing can be crucial. I’m just lucky I had some chances at the end and finished it off,” Fu said.

“I prefer longer matches but it’s nice to play in different formats. It’s good for fans but I prefer long matches because you can get into the match. In the first few frames in a best of seven in a ranking event you feel a bit nervous, so you need to be focused.”

Mark King (pictured), runner-up to Stephen Hendry in the 1997 Welsh Open, prevailed 4-3 over Sean O’Sullivan.

King trailed 3-2 but made a 62 break in the sixth frame and one of 63 in the decider, although he was put under some pressure at the end when O’Sullivan got two snookers he needed to be able to force a re-spot with the last three colours remaining. However, King sank the blue and added the pink to seal victory

He said: “It was a struggle. I didn’t play well but when my back was against the wall I made a couple of good breaks.

“If you lose in the first round you don’t get paid. When you have three children it’s nice to pick some money up.”

World Snooker has announced that the quarter-final schedule has changed with three matches now being televised rather than two and play starting at 12pm, an hour earlier than previously stated.


Photographs by Monique Limbos.