Stephen Maguire's class should tell over longer format
Scottish rivals set for lengthy battle
World number 18 Stephen Maguire came through three rounds of qualifying to reach the quarter-finals of the Betfred World Championship last year, and he is fancied to kick off his campaign in style at the English Institute of Sport where he takes on Allan Taylor.
Taylor is 88 places below five-time ranking-event winner Maguire and hasn’t been beyond the last-32 stage in any tournament this season.
The duo have met twice, both times in minor best-of-seven events, but the Scot came through on each occasion and the longer format should help him cruise into the next round of qualifying with ease.
A much more competitive contest is expected between Scottish duo Alan McManus and Rhys Clark.
The honours are even in their head-to-heads and this is the third time they have met in the last two years. In a best-of-19 contest it is unlikely either will dominate and it could go all the way.
S Maguire -5.5 frames
2pts Evs bet365, Paddy Power
Over 15.5 frames in A McManus v R Clark
2pts 5-6 Ladbrokes, Coral
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