Carter ends Joyce challenge
Ali Carter saw off Judd Trump's conqueror Mark Joyce in a convincing performance to become the first man through to the quarter-finals of the williamhill.com UK Championship.
The two-time World Championship runner-up was a 6-2 winner against Walsall man Joyce, the world number 50 who caused a Sunday evening sensation in York by coming from 5-2 behind to sink title favourite Trump.
Carter surged to a 4-0 interval lead, helped by breaks of 46, 58 and 73, and - despite Joyce narrowing his arrears to 4-2 - there was no full-scale comeback this time.
Carter said: "It was a dream start for me but we saw what happened with Mark and Judd in the first round. I wasn't going to let that happen to me today. I didn't play great but I'm in the quarter-finals and maybe there's a bit left in there."
Thirty-three-year-old Essex man Carter had been relishing what looked a likely clash with Trump, a player he beat in a thrilling Crucible tussle last season.
"Everyone was saying, 'Oh you've got Judd in the second round', and I was looking forward to it," Carter said. "But I'll take Mark Joyce and in many ways it was as tough a match as Judd, because the expectation totally changed. I was pleased with my stickability today and I'm pleased to be in the quarter-finals of another big event."
Joining Carter in the last eight was Matthew Stevens, the Welshman a 6-4 winner in a gruelling match against Hong Kong's Marco Fu. Stevens, 35, won the UK title in 2003 but had not reached the quarter-final stage again until now. He will face John Higgins or Mark Davis next.
He said of his hard-fought exchange with Fu: "It wasn't the best match in the world. I'll have to play a lot better than that if I'm to go any further. It's hard to enjoy a match when you're making breaks of eight and playing safe all the time. But the last two frames from 4-4 were good. I'm in it so I can still win it."
Shaun Murphy impressed in a 6-2 second-round victory over his fellow former world champion Graeme Dott. The 30-year-old world number four had a total clearance of 130 in a victory that sets up a quarter-final against Mark King or 17-year-old Luca Brecel, who knocked out Ricky Walden on Monday night.
Stuart Bingham has taken the Australian Open and Premier League titles this year and amassed over £150,000 in prize money, and nobody has played better in York so far. Bingham showed spirit in beating Stephen Maguire, the 2004 champion, 6-4, closing with a break of 54 after a run of 120 in the previous frame to set up the clash with Carter.
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