Ronnie O’Sullivan’s opening Championship League campaign proved no close shave as he breezed through Group Ten without dropping a frame on Friday.
The five-time World Champion, sporting a moustache for the first time, reeled off three consecutive 3-0 victories to book his place in the next phase of the tournament in Milton Keynes.
In his first tournament appearance since February’s Shoot-Out, O’Sullivan showed no sign of rustiness as he charged out of the traps with a break of 112 in the first frame against Kishan Hirani.
The Rocket quickly added breaks of 52 and 65 to put his first three points on the board in under 45 minutes of play.
He then returned to repeat the dose on former Shoot-Out champion Michael Georgiou, commencing the match in similarly ruthless fashion with a break of 116.
O’Sullivan followed in with back-to-back breaks of 82 and 80 to double his points tally, restricting the Cypriot to just 22 points in the entire match.
O’Sullivan entered his final fixture against Chris Wakelin needing just two frames to secure top spot, and he comfortably clinched the opener before compiling a break of 97 to ensure he could not be caught.
The world number six put the gloss on a superb debut campaign by adding a break of 93.
Wakelin secured second spot with four points, ahead of Kishan Hirani on frames difference, while Georgiou failed to get off the mark.
Elsewhere, Group 15 saw Tom Ford storm to top spot for the loss of just one frame.
The world number 26 began with a 3-0 victory over Ian Burns with breaks of 87 and 53 before firing in clinical breaks of 66 and 130 to see off Mike Dunn by the same scoreline.
The Leicester ace then completed his passage into the next round with a 3-1 success over Robert Milkins with a top break of 87.
Milkins finished in second position with four points, ahead of Ian Burns by just a single frame, while Middlesbrough’s Dunn failed to get off the mark.
Saturday sees Championship League Groups One and Eight take place at the Marshall Arena, with former World Champion Stuart Bingham the notable name in action.
Championship League Snooker 2020 Results
Friday June 5
Ronnie O’Sullivan 3-0 Kishan Hirani (Group 10)
Robert Milkins 3-0 Mike Dunn (Group 15)
Chris Wakelin 3-0 Michael Georgiou (Group 10)
Tom Ford 3-0 Ian Burns (Group 15)
Chris Wakelin 2-2 Kishan Hirani (Group 10)
Tom Ford 3-0 Mike Dunn (Group 15)
Ronnie O’Sullivan 3-0 Michael Georgiou (Group 10)
Robert Milkins 2-2 Ian Burns (Group 15)
Michael Georgiou 1-3 Kishan Hirani (Group 10)
Tom Ford 3-1 Robert Milkins (Group 15)
Ronnie O’Sullivan 3-0 Chris Wakelin (Group 10)
Mike Dunn 1-3 Ian Burns (Group 15)