Mark Allen could see his consistency rewarded with Glasgow success
Joe Perry looks ready to build on his York heroics
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Mark Allen’s performances are not getting the rewards they deserve but he continues to play well and it could be the Pistol’s time to hit the target in Glasgow this week.
Allen’s latest ranking event win came in March last year but he has been a model of consistency this season and another positive showing in the Betway UK Championship suggests silverware is fast approaching.
The Irishman made the last 16 at the Barbican in York where he made seven centuries and were it not for a determined Joe Perry he could have gone all the way.
Allen has reached the final of the International Championship and made the last four of the World Open this term and if he can avoid an early exit then he could be a difficult man to scupper.
The first-to-four-frames format is a leveller that helps the lesser lights but Allen's all-round game is in excellent shape and he has the scoring power to see off the other seeds in his quarter - Neil Robertson, Marco Fu and Martin Gould.
Defending champion Fu won in Glasgow 12 months ago having made the last four of the UK Championship a week before and Allen's title credentials follow a similar pattern.
Ronnie O'Sullivan often struggles to follow up a positive showing and being housed in the same quarter as home hope John Higgins makes him a vulnerable favourite.
Last season's semi-finalist Judd Trump is finding winning hard but the withdrawal of Mark Williams makes life easier and he should take some stopping in what looks the weakest of the four quarters.
However, in an open event which can often throw up a sackful of strange results it may be wise to have Perry on your side at a tasty price in the bottom half.
Perry bounced back to form to make the quarter-finals at York last week and could take some stopping armed with a favourable draw.
His job has been made easier with Luca Brecel being replaced by Jackson Page and he shouldn't fear a potential last-16 showdown with Shaun Murphy, who may struggle with the quick turnaround.
1pt each-way 22-1 Betfred
1pt each-way 50-1 general
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