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World Snooker Championship: John Higgins rallies to Crucible victory;  Anthony McGill and Kyren Wilson also through |  Snooker News

Quadruple world snooker champion John Higgins makes his way into the second round after winning six frames on the rotation; Scottish comrade Anthony McGill organizes the eighth meeting with Ronnie O’Sullivan; Last year’s finalist Kyren Wilson also

Last updated: 04/19/21 23:44 pm

John Higgins fought 7-4 to beat China’s Tian Pengfei at the World Snooker Championship

John Higgins blamed the stifling pressure from Crucible for his poor performance despite struggling for the second round of the World Snooker Championship with a 10-7 victory over China’s Tian Pengfei.

The four-time champion fought back 7-4 from behind to win six frames on the rotation, belatedly finding his form in a game that went twice the time limit by ending his victory with two consecutive centuries.

This may be the 45-year-old’s 27th appearance at Le Creuset, but, despite his colossal experience, Higgins admitted that the weight of the venue’s history was still impossible to ignore.

Higgins said, “It’s that place that does it – I think I stopped breathing there a few times. That’s what it does to you – the pressure can be so intense.

“It was a poor game for me and I dodged a bullet there because Tian had enough chances to beat me. I brought him down to my level and it’s a great relief.”

World Snooker Championship: John Higgins rallies to Crucible victory;  Anthony McGill and Kyren Wilson also through |  Snooker News

Anthony McGill advanced to second round at Crucible

Higgins’ compatriot Anthony McGill proved he didn’t have a Crucible hangover after his semi-final loss eight months ago as he entered the second round with a 10-5 win over Ricky Walden.

Resuming with a slim 5-4 advantage over their former semifinalist, McGill extended their lead with back-to-back breaks of 83 and 130 before a 98 from Walden reduced the deficit.

But McGill responded to close the game with three executives in a row, including two more half-centuries, to set up a last-eight meeting with Ronnie O’Sullivan.

“I’m just going to try and play my own game,” said McGill. “I don’t think there’s anyone in the game who has Ronnie’s aura – he’s the best ever and I’m really looking forward to it.

“I won’t approach the game any differently. I can only play the best I can play, and if the other guy is too good, that’s fine.”

Kyren Wilson, beaten in the final last year by O’Sullivan, was forced to fight for a 10-8 first-round victory over Gary Wilson.

Wilson trailed 5-1 in the early stages, but fought back with three centuries to snatch the game in his favor, and despite a gallant effort from the underdog, the Welshman took a 73 break to avoid another decider.

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