Neil Robertson routs Lines in Sheffield


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Neil Robertson secured a place at the International Championship after thrashing Oliver Lines 6-0 in qualifying on Saturday.

The Australian came into his first match of the new season hoping to pick up where he left off, as he enjoyed a highly productive 2018-19 campaign, winning three ranking-event titles, most recently the China Open in April.

Robertson certainly showed no signs of rust as he easily dismantled world number 97 Lines, registering three century breaks of 112, 127 and 115 as he booked his place in the main draw after just 106 minutes of play.

The 37-year-old, who is priced at 7.50 to go on and be crowned world champion in 2020, lost in the final of last year’s International Championship to Mark Allen and he will be hoping to go one better this time around.

Indeed, Robertson has never won the event, which will take place at Baihu Media Broadcasting Centre in Daqing in August, but in this kind of form he will take some stopping.

Qualifying for the International Championship will continue at Sheffield’s Ponds Forge International Sports Centre on Sunday and there will be a number of big names in action, including three-time world champion Mark Williams and Englishman Gary Wilson, who made it all the way through to the World Championship semi-finals last season before losing to eventual winner Judd Trump.

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