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Rare occurrence: John Higgins suffers whitewash at European Masters, losing 5-0 to Tom Ford



Four-times world champion John Higgins suffered a rare whitewash as the chance to claim the £150,000 prize for topping the BetVictor Series rankings was wrenched from his grasp by Tom Ford.

ord wrapped up a 5-0 demolition of the Scot at the European Masters in Milton Keynes with a break of 127 as he surged into the fourth round.

Higgins scored only 50 points in total with Ford dominating from the off with frame-winning visits of 83, 68 and 87.

Ford told the World Snooker Tour: “I did see a 5-0 coming, but not for me, to be fair. I went out there and I played well. My safety was good, my break-building was good, so I’m pleased, very pleased.”

Judd Trump was also dumped out of the tournament despite making breaks of 100 and 124 as he went down 5-3 to Kurt Maflin in the evening session.

Maflin won three successive frames from 2-1 down to lead 4-2 and then closed the match out in the eighth to spring a major upset.

Kyren Wilson was another high-profile casualty as he went down 5-4 to Fan Zhengyi.

Both men made century breaks in a tight contest, but it was the 21-year-old Chinese player who edged through in a tense final frame.

Earlier, Ronnie O’Sullivan had saved the best for last as he taught Chinese teenager Wu Yize a lesson to make the last 16.

O’Sullivan, who wrapped up a 5-1 victory with a century break, never got out of second gear at the Marshall Arena as the 18-year-old squandered a series of chances to put him under pressure.

Wu ran out of position having given himself opportunities to square the match at 2-2 going into the mid-session interval and then to reduce the deficit to 3-2 immediately afterwards, and O’Sullivan punished him on both occasions.

However, it was not until the final frame that the Rocket found his usual fluency with a clearance of 112 to clinch victory.

O’Sullivan will face fellow Englishman Ashley Hugill in the next round after he recovered from losing the opening frame to take the next five to beat Ali Carter 5-1.

Fraser Patrick edged a tight contest with Martin Gould 5-4 to set up a showdown with Ford.

Gould led 3-1, but Patrick won three frames on the trot and then held his nerve at 4-4 as a break of 71 saw him home.

Graeme Dott had to produce four half-century breaks in the final five frames to edge past Zhou Yuelong 5-4.

Trailing 3-0 and 4-2, the Scot clawed his way back into the game with visits of 75, 52, 57 and 67 to make it through.

Ryan Day’s break of 117 in the deciding frame was enough to see off Ashley Carty 5-4, while Sunny Akani beat Luca Brecel by the same score.

There were no such difficulties, however, for Jordan Brown, who dispensed with Xiao Guodong with the minimum of fuss on his way to a 5-0 victory.

Anthony McGill will face Maflin in the fourth round after a comprehensive 5-1 win over Mitchell Mann which was clinched in style with a break of 134, while Yan Bingtao beat Joe Perry 5-2.



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