• World Championship

O'Sullivan books spot in last 16

ESPN staff
April 19, 2014
Ronnie O'Sullivan was not troubled by the qualifier © Getty Images

Ronnie O'Sullivan is the first player through to the last 16 of the World Championship after the defending champion defeated Robin Hull 10-4.

O'Sullivan took a commanding 7-2 lead in the first session, but after Hull won another couple of frames O'Sullivan did not face any problems as he crossed the finishing line with a break of 54.

O'Sullivan edged a tight first frame on the Crucible baize, despite an impressive break of 53 from Finland's No.1 Hull.

However, O'Sullivan soon clicked into gear and moved three frames clear with superb visits of 124 and 69. Hull, who retired from the sport in 2008 with a heart complaint but returned to action three years later, secured his first frame of the tournament in style with a century break of 102.

'The Rocket' clinched a close fifth frame by two points and sunk the black to move 4-1 up before he added another with an 81 break.

Hull, who beat former champion Peter Ebdon in the final round of qualifying to make the main draw in Sheffield, reduced the deficit with a 60 before O'Sullivan put himself in firm control with further breaks of 60 and 90.

Despite Hull collecting a couple more frames, O'Sullivan sealed victory without no problems to reach the second round.

Ken Doherty fought back from 3-0 down to trail Stuart Bingham 5-4 in their first round match, which will continue on Sunday. Bingham moved three frames to the good aided by an 85 break, but a 66 from Doherty kept the Irishman in it. Bingham restored a two-frame advantage but Doherty responded with a 91 to move back within one.

Bingham edged the eighth frame but his opponent held his nerve in the final visit of the session to clinch what could prove to be an important frame come their return on Sunday.

Stephen Maguire trails Ryan Day 6-3 after their opening session, while 2005 world champion Shaun Murphy is 5-4 down to Jamie Cope having missed a black in the eighth frame to go 5-3 in front. Two-time finalist Ali Carter leads Xiao Guodong 5-4 in their encounter.

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