Thoughts on the matches:
The seeds really don't like this tournament, do they? Just 8 out of 14 through to the last 16, least since Australia I think. Higgins vs Cope:
Higgins hasn't been his best this season, and has been looking to play himself into form before his big title defence. This is probably the best chance he will get, Cope and then either Milkins or Jin Long. Sould be an easy run to the semis. Then again, with the ways things have been going here, Jin Long will porbably end up getting through the quarter! Long vs Milkins:
Milkins looks to be in good form, although not sure if he won his last 32 match or whether Maguire lost it. Don't really care tbh. But probably Milkins.Dott vs Campbell:
Interesting that Dott has never beaten Campbell. Nevertheless, expecting Graeme to come through as he has beaten one of the more dangerous qualifiers, while Marcus hasn't played a match yet and will be coming in cold.Lee vs Robertson:
Lee has been playing well lately. Semis in Berlin, and if not for an untimely phone on his backswing, he was going to be in the semis in Newort, while Neil has a bad record in China, excluding his run to the semis in Shanghai last September. Robbo is different class though, and even though he didn't look his Hendry, I think he can up his level. King vs Ford:
Suprised King was here tbh but MJW has been crap since Shanghai. I'm guessing his climb to no1 in the world rankings and Berlin last year were his last glories and I'm expecting him to slide back down now. Think Ford will win this, as he seems to do well against qualifiers and maybe this will relieve the pressure he feels at venues. Although King is battler, and will at least give Trump/Allen a game.Trump vs Allen:
Should be a cracking match. Trump beat him in York, but three people he beat in York have got their revenge on him. Can Allen be the fourth? Should be a cracker and I expect the winner to reach the semis.Murphy vs Perry:
Perry seems to be playing well but Murphy should win this. Good chance for him for to go one step further than his semis this season and win. Selby vs Holt:
Holt looks to be playing well, while Selby just scraped through. However, whenever Selby has a crap first round, he usually ups his game and does well in the tournament (see Shanghai and Newport). Selby looks like he has had his dip in form for the season already and has recovered from it. And if he wins he has a chance to get his revenge on Murphy.
Then again, the way this tournament has been going we could end up with Long, Campbell, King and Holt in the semis.