NI OPEN SNOOKER: Unhappy Mark Allen sees off rival in Belfast

Mark Allen
Mark Allen

Mark Allen delighted the home crowd with a 4-1 win over Mark Joyce to move into the second round of the Northern Ireland Open - but was less than impressed with the table manners of his English rival.

The 30-year-old from Antrim had been beaten in four of his five matches against Joyce, with little love lost between the pair - but the seventh seed comfortably came through their contest at the Titanic Exhibition Centre in Belfast.

However, during the first frame Allen, standing at the baulk end of the table, sent a blue down onto the far cushion, which bounced back up into the middle pocket.

Allen, though, had already turned away to look across at Joyce before his effort fluked in following a double kiss off the white.

After the ball eventually dropped, he then walked over towards his opponent, complaining the Englishman had been in his eye line when shaping up to cue before Allen then moved off around the table.

Joyce swiftly apologised and sat down as Allen completed his break of 52 to win the frame. While Joyce did level the match at 1-1, Allen went on to take control after edging a tense third frame 66-52.

Earlier, there was a shock when Chinese second seed Ding Junhui went out 4-2 against compatriot Yu De Lu, despite having taken the first two frames.

Alan McManus, a semi-finalist at the 2016 World Championships, put out 16th seeded fellow Scot Stephen Maguire 4-3 in the deciding frame.

Elsewhere yesterday two-time world champion Mark Williams recorded the tournament’s highest break of 139 in the opening frame of his 4-2 win over David Grace, while Ireland’s Ken Doherty beat amateur Ashley Hugill 4-0.

And NI Open title sponsor Coral will once again donate £50 to Jessie May Children’s Hospice at Home for every century break made during the seven days of this week’s tournament.

The first was the Coral English Open in Manchester last month, where 63 centuries were made, raising a fantastic sum of £3,150.