Fascinating stuff today, as ever, at the Theatre of Dreams, Sheffield branch

With due respect to Manchester United and their fabled Old Trafford stadium, South Yorkshire’s very own TOD was up to its usual tricks today – notably courtesy of an enthralling second-round clash between the great Ronnie O’Sullivan and Scotland’s Anthony Gill.

The Rocket sped ahead by four frames to one, and probably should have made it five, before McGill clawed his way back into very serious contention to level matters at four apiece.

In frame seven we almost had a little Crucible earthquake, as the Scot looked set fair for a maximum but left a black over the pocket approaching his ton. Fine margins, and all that. It would I believe have been only the 12th 147 in Crucible World Championship history – a license to thrill indeed. Nearly ….

This best-of-25 cracker concludes tomorrow, with morning and evening action scheduled, and overnight Ronnie stands at 1/4 with Betfred to overcome the world number 16, and 9/2 in the outright market to retain his title.

Elsewhere, Shaun Murphy came from behind to beat Mark Davis 10-7, and was full of praise for his victim.

Tonight we have Mark Selby looking to finish off a potentially crushing triumph over Kurt Maflin, but 7pm sees a real corker in the offing – Neil Robertson v Jack Lisowski.

The Thunder from Down Under is a warm order to turn over the left-hander who thrillingly despatched Ali Carter in round one – full match markets are right here.

The sun is shining, and all is well. Speak soon.

Whenever you bet, Betfred

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