Defending champion Judd Trump kept his hopes of a third consecutive BetVictor Gibraltar Open title alive with a 4-1 win over Sanderson Lam to make the last 16.
The 23-time ranking event winner is also aiming the scoop the lucrative £150,000 BetVictor Series bonus for the third year in a row. The bumper payout is awarded to the player who amasses the most prize money over the eight counting events, with this week marking the series finale. Trump knows he must take home the title in order to top the rankings.
The Ace in the Pack progressed through his first two matches today with ease, whitewashing both Andrew Higginson and Simon Blackwell 4-0 to make the last 32. Trump then defeated Lam 4-1 to book a clash with Ricky Walden in the last 16. The remaining four rounds will be played out Saturday.
Walden is also still in the running for the bonus, but like Trump he will need to win the event. The Chester cueman booked his place in the last 16 with a 4-2 defeat of Zhou Yuelong. Walden looked to be in fine touch this evening, firing in runs of 54, 80, 140 and 65 on his way to the win.
John Higgins remains in pole position for the bonus after reaching the last 32, but a 4-2 defeat to Jimmy Robertson means his fate is out of his hands. The Scot leads Mark Allen on countback, after the Northern Irishman bowed out to Robert Milkins by a 4-3 scoreline.
Stuart Bingham defeated Yuan Sijun 4-2 to progress to the final day. The 2015 World Champion crafted the ninth 147 break of his career earlier in the day against Gerard Greene. Bingham’s last 16 assignment is a clash with Iran’s Soheil Vahedi.
Ben Hancorn reached the last 16 of a ranking event for the first time after beating Michael White 4-2. World number 86 Hancorn is currently battling for his tour survival and a deep run this weekend could prove to be extremely helpful to his ranking. Next up he faces Ben Woollaston, who defeated Ronnie O’Sullivan on his way to the last 16.
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