Anthony McGill held his nerve in an epic deciding frame to deny Jack Lisowski and book his place in the Last 16 of the World Snooker Championship on Monday.
McGill, a quarter-finalist on his Crucible debut in 2015, produced a granite performance to become only the second qualifier to progress in this year’s tournament so far.
The Scotsman had established a 5-2 lead before Lisowski made a break of 107 on the way to trailing by one at the halfway stage.
The number 13 seed then added a quick-fire break of 90 to level after the restart, and after McGill made a 65 in frame 11, Lisowski responded with an 84 break to make it six apiece.
McGill then reeled off three frames in a row with breaks of 70, 67 and 51 to go to the verge of victory, but only for Lisowski to reply with three straight frames of his own, including breaks of 65 and 102, to force a decider.
Both players missed multiple chances as a nail-biting frame went down to the final blue, and it was McGill who potted it from range at a narrow angle to set up a simple pink to carry him over the line.
Elsewhere, Ronnie O’Sullivan swept aside Thailand’s Thepchaiya Un-Nooh 10-1 in the fastest match in the history of the tournament, lasting just one hour and 48 minutes.
O’Sullivan had established an 8-1 overnight lead and quickly secured the further two frames he required to race into the Last 16 in Sheffield.
The five-time World Champion had produced breaks of 101, 85, 115, 74, 88, 76 and 65 en route to an 8-1 lead and began the short-lived second session with a break of 93 before dominating frame 11 to seal his progression.
Yan Bingtao made hard work of a 10-7 success over debutant qualifier Elliot Slessor to record his first win at The Crucible.
Yan, the number 16 seed, had coasted into a 7-1 lead following the first session and looked to be cruising over the line when he moved 9-2 in front.
Slessor, however, gave a fine account of himself at the second time of asking, making breaks of 123 and 59 in closing the gap to just 9-7.
His comeback, though, was eventually brought to an end as the Chinese number two set up a show-down with defending champion Judd Trump later in the week.
Noppon Saengkham established a commanding 6-3 lead over 2005 World Champion Shaun Murphy heading in to Tuesday’s conclusion.
Saengkham, making only his second Crucible appearance, opened up a 4-1 lead with breaks of 64, 67 and 59 before Murphy hit back with successive breaks of 75 and 101.
Saengkham, though, took the next two frames to put himself in a strong position at the close of play and give Murphy plenty to think about overnight.
Three-time World Champion Mark Selby edged his way into a 5-4 lead over Northern Ireland’s Jordan Brown following a gruelling first session.
Selby was far from at his best for much of the evening and found himself 3-2 down to the debutant – who made a break of 76 in frame two.
Selby made a half century to level up before turning on the style with a 119 clearance to go in front for the first time.
Brown levelled again, but only for the Leicester ace to clinch the final frame of the session to gain the upper-hand overnight.
World Snooker Championship 2020 Results
Monday August 3
Ronnie O’Sullivan 10-1 Thepchaiya Un-Nooh
Yan Bingtao 10-7 Elliot Slessor
Shaun Murphy 3-6 Noppon Saengkham (Resumes Tuesday)
Jack Lisowski 9-10 Anthony McGill
Mark Selby 5-4 Jordan Brown (Resumes Tuesday)