Alfie Burden can put feelgood factor to best possible use
Allen no certainty to defeat London rough diamond in China
Eurosport 1, from 6.30am Wednesday
Perhaps the biggest surprise in Daqing this week is the off-the-table news that Alfie Burden has been ingratiating himself with snooker authorities.
Burden, who has made a name for himself in the game as something of a wild child, has seldom made life easy for tournament organisers but the one-time Arsenal apprentice will have impressed many on the tour this week by visiting a local school with World Snooker chairman Jason Ferguson.
Talent has never been an issue for Burden, who hasn't realised his full potential on the baize, and it's just possible that an improved feelgood factor could result in him making life tougher for his International Championship third-round opponent Mark Allen.
Burden, who won their only previous meeting in 2006, is 4-7 with a handicap start of 3.5 frames and after the Londoner thrashed David Lilley 6-0, Allen will do well to win six of the first eight frames contested against the Gooner.
Ding Junhui is a warm order to see off Matthew Stevens, while the oddsmakers also expect Neil Robertson and Ali Carter to progress in Guangdong province.
A Burden +3.5 frames
2pts 4-7 Paddy Power
Read Racing Post Sport every day for no-nonsense previews and expert sports betting tips
Follow us on Twitter @racingpostsport
Like us on Facebook RacingPostSport