O'Sullivan halts Murphy revival

England's snooker world champion Ronnie O'Sullivan, pictured in January 2017, was dethroned by 34-year-old Shaun Murphy at this year's World Championships

Five-time snooker world champion Ronnie 'Rocket' O'Sullivan stemmed a late surge by 2005 champion Shaun Murphy to take a lead of 10-6 to bed with him at the World Championships on Friday.

Murphy, whose mutual antipathy with the mercurial O'Sullivan is well documented, had looked in danger of suffering a repeat of the humiliation of four years ago in the quarter-finals by losing to the same opponent in two sessions when he trailed 9-3 on Friday.

However, the resilient 34-year-old reeled off three successive frames to rattle O'Sullivan, who then somewhat to his relief and despite a disturbance by a spectator captured the final frame of the session to leave him needing three frames in Saturday's final session to reach the last eight.

Last year's beaten finalist Ding Junhui of China was looking comfortably placed when he led compatriot Liang Wenbo 6-2 after their first session.

However, Liang came out fighting in the evening and won five of the eight frames on offer including breaks of 130 and 84 and trailed only 9-7 heading into Saturday's climax.

Stuart Bingham, the 2015 champion, had the satisfaction of recording the largest break so far of 138 in his dour second round clash with English compatriot Kyren Wilson but ended up losing 13-10.