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Comeback king Murphy battles through pain barrier to deny Trump

Jonathan Davies in UK Championship

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Shaun Murphy hits out at “irritating” Ronnie O’Sullivan comments

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Ding and O'Sullivan embrace (credit:Steven Paston/PA Images)

Ronnie O’Sullivan v Ding Junhui live stream | UK Championship 2022 preview

Trump and Murphy collide in Riyadh

Shaun Murphy battled through injury with an inspired comeback denying Judd Trump and securing his UK Championship quarter-final place.

The Magician sparked concern that he would withdraw ahead of the blockbuster clash at the York Barbican, having tweeted that he was struggling with an ongoing neck and back issue.

The 2008 champion looked increasingly comfortable during his pre-match practise session, and he was regularly wincing during the battle of the Triple Crown winners.

Nevertheless, Murphy battled through the pain barrier as he recovered from 5-3 down by dominating the last three frames to advance to the last eight of the tournament for the eighth time.

“Although the problem with my neck and back is angered by playing, the more I stretched out there, it didn’t go but I think I just played through it,” he told BBC.

“Most of the shots – certainly for the first four-fifths of the match – were agony. I know Judd doesn’t know what’s going on in my head, but it was very painful.

“You’ve either got to quit or carry on. I’m absolutely over the moon.”

Murphy had won three of his five previous encounters with Trump in Triple Crown events and drew first blood with a brilliant clearance of 100. Although his opponent levelled with 89, he then regained the lead with a neat 43 clearance snatching frame three on the black.

Trump controlled the next three frames with runs of 62 and 59 along the way, before he moved to the brink of victory after two scrappy frames at 5-3.

But the 2011 champion potted just one ball thereon as the Magician rallied with 110 before going close to a maximum in the following frame. Despite breaking down after losing position on the 14th red, his contribution of 104 was enough to force a decider.

Murphy was in first with 44 before Trump had a chance to close the gap. However, a missed red with the rest was pounced on by his opponent, whose subsequent run of 53 secured a fifth straight win over the Ace on British soil.

Elsewhere, Ding Junhui cruised through to the quarter-finals after a commanding 6-1 rout of Jamie Clarke, who dumped out Mark Williams in the opening round.

The three-time champion hit breaks of 118, 99, 87, 67 and 55 to set up a mouth-watering clash with Ronnie O’Sullivan.