World Championship 2019: Former winner Neil Robertson dominates debutant Georgiou

Neil Robertson (right) is watched by Michael Georgiou

Betfred World Snooker Championship
Venue: Crucible Theatre, Sheffield Dates: 20 April-6 May
Coverage: Watch live on BBC One, BBC Two, Red Button, iPlayer, Connected TV, BBC Sport website and BBC Sport app.

Former winner Neil Robertson was in scintillating form as he built a 9-0 first-session lead to turn Michael Georgiou’s World Championship debut into a nightmare.

The 2010 champion hit two tons and five breaks of more than 50 to move to within one frame of a first-round win.

Qualifier Georgiou scored just 107 points and could suffer just the second whitewash in Crucible history.

Champion Mark Williams had earlier taken a 6-3 lead against Martin Gould.

Robertson’s display, however, overshadowed last year’s shock Crucible winner.

Only Robertson’s fellow Australian Eddie Charlton had been beaten 10-0 at snooker’s showpiece event in Sheffield, losing by that margin to John Parrott in 1992.

Danny Fowler, a part-time binman, holds the unwanted record of the fewest points in a match, managing just 191 in his 10-1 loss to seven-time world champion Stephen Hendry in 1993.

Williams starts in style

Williams came out to a fabulous reception on the first morning of action at the 17-day snooker marathon.

And although qualifier Gould took the opening frame, the Welshman won the next five, scoring two half-centuries and a stylish 129 on the way.

The Englishman then took the next two frames but a 97 gave his 44-year-old opponent the upper hand in the best-of-19-frame tie.

Williams and Gould play to a finish on Saturday evening.

In the other morning match, number 14 seed Luca Brecel battled back from 3-2 down to lead England’s Gary Wilson 5-4 at the end of their first session.

Chinese superstar Ding Junhui, the 2016 runner-up, made a steady start to hold a 6-3 advantage against world number 24 Anthony McGill. The 2016 runner-up compiled breaks of 64, 70, 64, 52 and 129.

McGill’s fellow Scot, number 15 seed Stephen Maguire, gets his tournament under way on Saturday evening.

Maguire faces Tian Pengfei, one of six Chinese players appearing at the Crucible this year.

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