Dafabet Masters 2018: Ryan Day relishing Ally Pally experience


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Welshman Ryan Day was full of praise for the Alexandra Palace atmosphere after a 6-4 comeback win over Ding Junhui in their Dafabet Masters first round clash.

China’s Ding dominated the early stages as Day struggled to get a foothold, a break of 111 being the highlight as the world number four surged into a 3-0 lead in the best-of-11 clash.

Day was returning to the Masters for the first time since 2010 and he made a vital contribution of 79 to take frame four and get on the board before the interval. Back-to-back century breaks of 125 and 105 levelled the game and left the 15th seed with his tail up.

Having won his first ranking title at the Riga Masters earlier this season and reached the semi-finals of the UK Championship last month, Day has every reason to be confident and that showed as he closed out a 6-4 win.

Ding will feel he let things slip, particularly in frame eight when he was on a break of 62 before he accidentally touched the blue when using the rest in trying to pot the third-last red.

That allowed Day to sweep in and win a crucial frame to move 5-3 ahead. John Higgins or Anthony McGill will be next up for Day in the last-eight and he’s keen to enjoy the Alexandra Palace experience.

“It was a great atmosphere, it was a full house. It’s a great place to play snooker,” he said after ousting 2011 champion Ding.

“It’s going be a tough game in the quarter-finals but I’m looking forward to it. You just play the table in front of you and hope that your form comes out. To play in a great arena like this with one table is what we practise for.”

Day is 19.00 to win the Dafabet Masters title on Sunday. Higgins meanwhile is 1.29 to win his all-Scottish clash with McGill on Wednesday. The four-time world champion is 5.25 to win 6-2.

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