Lu Ning and Lyu Haotian won Groups E & F respectively to move into the final day of the 2022 BetVictor Championship League Snooker at the Morningside Arena, Leicester live on FreeSports, DAZN, Viaplay, Matchroom.Live and networks worldwide.
Lu came through a group of Mark Williams, Stephen Maguire, and Aaron Hill to book his spot in Friday’s final stage in what proved to be a highly opening day of Winners’ Week. Williams began the day as he meant to go on with a rapid 3-0 win over Hill in one of the quickest matches of the tournament so far in half an hour thanks to breaks of 76, 61 and 133.
Williams set the early pace with that win but Lu had his own ideas of how the group would pan out to defeat Maguire first up 3-1. after initially dropping the opening frame. Lu going 2-1 up with a break of 129.
Maguire got his own win to end the afternoon session to pile the misery on Hill with a whitewash win to leave him on three points and keep the group wide open.
The picture became clear at the top of the evening session as Lu seemed to move up a gear against Williams. 70 and 61 put Lu in firm control before 94 in the final frame put him on top of the group and need only a point against Hill to be the first name in the final day.
Hill had a torrid day before he came against Lu and he went 2-1 up to look to upset the apple cart and keep Maguire’s hopes alive. Lu came back though to complete an unbeaten day with seven points from three matches to progress.
Over on Table 2, Lyu battled with Hossein Vafaei, Jimmy Robertson, and Michael Judge to make his way into the next phase. Vafaei went the similar route as Williams in the opener with his own 3-0 win but over Judge. The ShootOut champion making 117, 89, and 123 to set his stall out early.
Lyu came into the group as the third seed and battled to a 2-2 draw with Robertson first up after leading 2-1. Robertson’s chances were short-lived after a second draw of the day but this time against Judge left him with all the work to do. The group was wide open going into the evening and Lyu made sure he would stay in the picture thanks to a whitewash win over Vafaei where the best break of the match came in the last.
That win for Lyu meant he had the group in his hands as he went head to head with Judge in the penultimate match of the group. Lyu took the opening two the pick of the bunch being 76 in the second frame. Judge did come back to take the third but Lyu hit a flurry of smaller breaks of 27, 13, and 27 to seal a spot in the final day alongside compatriot Lu.
Group C headlines Table 1 tomorrow live on FreeSports, DAZN, Viaplay, and Matchroom.Live with Stuart Bingham, Jordan Brown, Jamie Jones, and Ben Woollaston with Group H live on YouTube from midday with David Gilbert, Robert Milkins, Xiao Guodong, Michael White.