Ronnie O’Sullivan beaten by Hossein Vafaei at the World Open

By Sports Desk March 21, 2024

Iran’s Hossein Vafaei edged out Ronnie O’Sullivan in a thrilling final frame to reach the quarter-finals of the World Open in Yushan.

O’Sullivan fought back from behind on four occasions, the last time with a break of 125, but ran out of position on a break of 62 in the decider.

The world number one still looked set to win when he later potted the final red to lead by 26 points, but missed a difficult black along the cushion instead of opting to leave Vafaei snookered on the yellow.

That decision came back to bite the seven-time world champion as he left the yellow over a corner pocket in escaping from a snooker and Vafaei held his nerve to clear the table and secure a 5-4 victory.

Defending champion Judd Trump, who won the tournament when it was last staged in 2019, also reached the last eight with a 5-3 win over David Lilley, while Barry Hawkins made breaks of 129, 67, 71 and 54 as he reeled off five frames in succession to beat Stephen Maguire 5-1.

In the final match of the morning session, Kyren Wilson made a break of 119 in the deciding frame to beat Ben Woollaston 5-4.

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