Sheffield (England), April 26: China’s snooker star Ding Junhui became the seventh top-16 player to fall in the first round of the World Championship after he suffered a 9-10 loss to Ryan Day of Wales.
Ding’s shock exit Wednesday left only five of the seeds so far through to the last 16 of the tournament, Xinhua reported.
The World No.10, who trailed Day 5-4 in the first session, succeeded to overtake Wednesday and consolidated a 9-6 advantage, seemingly to clinch a comeback victory under the best of 19 frames.
However, the 32-year-old Day, who lost all the previous four meets against Ding, fought his way back to snatch three straight frames, levelling the score to 9-9.
In the last frame, the 25-year-old Ding made a mistaken shot to the red when leading 48-2, handing the game to the world 35th-ranked opponent.
After the five hours and 36 minutes seesaw battle, there are only two Chinese players in contention at Crucible.
Among them, the championship debutant Cao Yupeng, who shocked World No.11 Mark Allen to enter the last 16, will play against Day on Friday.
Cao’s compatriot, Liu Chuang, temporarily trailed Mark Willams 6-3 after the first session in the afternoon. The duo will resume play for a second-round berth Thursday under the best of 19 frames.
Also Wednesday, the home favourite Judd Trump overcame both Dominic Dale and a nasty bout of food poisoning to enter the next round with a 10-7 victory.
Joe Perry, who led Graeme Dott 8-1 in the first session on Tuesday, won two straight frames in the morning to wrap up the breezing 10-1 victory.
The tournament, tipped as one of the big three events in a season along with UK championship and the Masters, is running from April 21 to May 7. It has been staged at the Crucible Theatre since 1977.