Rocket man Ronnie squeezes into UK quarter-finals

Updated / Thursday, 7 Dec 2017 23:49

Ronnie O'Sullivan is through

Ronnie O'Sullivan survived a major scare to edge out world number 84 Sunny Akani 6-5 in the UK Championship.

Five-time tournament winner O'Sullivan squeezed home in the deciding frame, after Akani blew the chance to wrap up victory when leading 5-4.

O'Sullivan will now meet Martin Gould in the quarter-finals, and will doubtless be relieved to have prevailed over Thailand's 22-year-old Akani, who led 2-0, 4-2 and 5-4 in an enthralling encounter.

Five-time world champion O'Sullivan remains on course for yet another title at the York Barbican, but must clearly sharpen up after a patchy effort on Thursday night.

The 2008 tournament winner Shaun Murphy stormed past Ricky Walden 6-1, to book a quarter-final against Mark King.

"On another day it could have been closer," Murphy told the BBC.

"It was a bit tighter than the score suggests. I picked up a few of his crumbs.

"He had chances and didn't take them."

Mark Joyce saw off Lyu Haotian 6-4 to book a last-eight showdown with Wales' Ryan Day.