Snooker: Williams' Shanghai anger
Friday 12 March 1999
Forced to play in a small outside arena due to local Chinese television electing to broadcast the Alan McManus v Mark King match, Williams made his feelings plain. "The table and the room were a disgrace for professional snooker," he moaned. "I can't wait to get out of this place.
"It was the same at the Scottish Open in Aberdeen. The outside table set-up was terrible there as well and something needs to be done. It doesn't make you want to play. Mind you, Paul played really well and towards the end he hammered me. I think he could give John Higgins a fight in the quarter-finals."
Williams moved smoothly into a 2-0 lead with breaks of 53 and 48 and looked capable of repeating his 5-0 first-round whitewash of Dominic Dale. The turning point arrived in the third frame. Having opened the scoring with a 58 break, Williams missed a black off its spot and Davies produced a 67 clearance to steal it. The world No 41 then made breaks of 68, 50, 51 and 42 to dominate the next four frames and record the biggest surprise of the tournament so far.
"The clearance in the third gave me the boost I needed and my form kicked in," Davies said. "I knew this kind of victory was coming because I have been playing so well in practice. It was just a matter of when."
Stephen Hendry returned to his best during a 5-2 quarter-final victory over John Parrott. "That's probably my best performance of the season," declared the six-times world champion, who only squeezed past Steve Davis 5-4 on the black in the previous round. "When you scrape through a match you should by rights have lost it always tends to relax you and that's how I felt out there," added Hendry.
His level of relaxation and focus was apparent from the outset as he prevented Parrott potting a single ball in the opening two frames. The experienced Liverpudlian took the third with a break of 63 and opened the scoring with 51 in the fourth before Hendry rolled in a long red to launch the 87 clearance which gave him a 3-1 lead.
Parrott won a scrappy fifth frame but did not take another point as Hendry impressively whipped through the next two frames in only 18 minutes with breaks of 107, 46 and 30.
"It was very encouraging, because I can't remember missing an important pot from distance apart from one when a TV cameraman put me off by moving. I just hope I can keep this momentum going," added Hendry.
Next up for Hendry, who is bidding to capture his fourth title of the season, will be Billy Snaddon, his practice partner at Spencers Snooker Centre in Stirling for the past eight years.
The Microsoft mogul told fans a few home truths during his Reddit AMA
Latest in Sport
Brooklyn Beckham poses in Arsenal training kit following rumours of signing for the Gunners
Manchester United transfer news and rumours: David De Gea could leave for FREE; £38m for Marquinhos; £37m bid for Mats Hummels;
Transfer talk: Juan Cuadrado Chelsea move imminent; Manchester United eye Nathaniel Clyne; Andre Schurrle medical at Wolfsburg
Danny Ings to Liverpool: The Reds attempt to steal a march on rivals in race to sign Burnley striker
Kim Sears 'swearing' outburst threatens to overshadow Andy Murray's Australian Open semi-final win
- 1 Woman falls to her death as she celebrates marriage proposal at the edge of Ibiza cliff
- 3 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 4 Baldness could soon be treated using stem cells, scientists hope
- 5 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
£40000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£120 - £180 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: The Humanities Department of this ...
£120 - £180 per annum: Tradewind Recruitment: Newham Position: Music Start dat...
£120 - £150 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: Sutton Position: Science teacher S...