Champion of Champions Snooker day three: Robertson, Murphy enter

Lee Gormley | November 11, 2015

Neil Robertson v Rory McLeod

  • Champion of Champions
  • Thursday, November 12th
  • Scheduled for: 13:00 GMT
  • Ricoh Arena, Coventry
  • Live on ITV4

Robertson faces home hope McLeod

Australian potter Neil Robertson enters the Champion of Champions fray on day three, as the world number four comes up against home hope Rory McLeod in his opening encounter hoping for a fifth successive victory over his opponent.

Snooker - 2015 Dafabet Masters - Day Eight - Alexandra Palace

The 2010 Crucible king has never lost to 44-year-old McLeod, having secured victory in all four of their meetings, dating back to their first match-up at the 2005 UK Championship.

A 5-1 triumph for Robertson in last year’s World Open last 32 clash in China was the outcome of the potting pair’s most recent contest, but McLeod, who grew up under 50 miles from the Ricoh Arena venue, is 7/2 with Coral to cause an upset.

Robertson ready for challenge

Robertson secured victory in this year’s Gdynia Open to book his place at this Coventry tournament, overcoming Welshman Mark Williams with a 4-0 whitewash to prevail in Poland. He also downed McLeod before with that same daunting scoreline in a 2014 Welsh Open clash and is 17/5 to do so again this time out.

Snooker - World Snooker Championships - Day Nine - The Crucible Theatre

The 33-year-old has rallied to 10 ranking event triumphs in his illustrious career to date, but will be confident of going all the way here in the West Midlands in preparation for the upcoming UK Championship, and is 11/10 to progress from Thursday’s Group Four encounters.

Wellingborough cueist McLeod won this year’s Ruhr Open in Germany, but faces a tough test in overcoming Robertson for the first time in his career, but the home favourite will have plenty of support and is 9/1 to halt his Aussie foe 4-3 in a possible deciding frame.

Shaun Murphy v Yan Bingtao

  • Champion of Champions
  • Thursday, November 12th
  • Scheduled for: 15:00 GMT
  • Ricoh Arena, Coventry
  • Live on ITV4

Murphy contest teenager Bingtao

Shaun Murphy sublimely completed a career Triple Crown earlier this year with his Masters triumph at Alexandra Palace, thrashing Robertson 10-2 in the final, and he now faces China’s teenage sensation Yan Bingtao in their Champion of Champions opener.

Snooker - Betfred World Championship - Day Fourteen - Crucible Theatre

The Magician became only the 10th player ever to have clinched all of the UK, World and Masters titles during his career, comprehensively claiming victory seven years after winning the former York-based tournament.

Attentions now turn to this prestigious Coventry event, where the Harlow break-builder is a heavy odds-on 1/5 favourite to topple 15-year-old Bingtao, who has the talent to cause another tournament surprise, following early exits for Judd Trump and Stuart Bingham.

Chinese potting sensation

Bingtao enters the Champion of Champions as its youngest competitor, and is 7/2 to dump Murphy out, with his World Cup winning teammate Zhou Yuelong having already stunned reigning world champion Bingham in this event.

Snooker - 2015 Dafabet Masters - Day Eight - Alexandra Palace

Expectedly, Murphy has never faced Bingtao in his career, potentially giving the latter teenage sensation even more hope. The youngster, alongside Yuelong, secured a Snooker World Cup coup in the summer for China B, thwarting Scotland’s John Higgins and Stephen Maguire in the final, proving he is capable of thwarting Murphy in Coventry.

Bingtao is 9/1 to edge out his more experienced opponent in a final frame decider, while the Magician will look to rediscover his Masters form ahead of the UK Championship, and he is 13/4 to win 4-2.


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Coral’s top tip: Zhou Yuelong has already stunned Stuart Bingham, so back his World Cup winning partner Yan Bingtao to overcome Shaun Murphy at 7/2