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Ding Junhui beaten at China Open
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Chinese hopeful Ding Junhui was knocked out of the 2008 World Snooker China Open after losing 5-4 to Shaun Murphy in Beijing on Thursday.

Snooker player Ding Junhui is in the match against Shaun Murphy on Thursday, March 27, 2008.

Ding had to come from 2-0 down to level 2-2 thanks to breaks of 79, 72. The Chinese hopeful looked set for victory in the next after a run of 80.

However, Murphy fought back in the sixth frame with a convincing 57 clearance to level the match, and then snatched the seventh by 78-50.

Ding did his best job of the night to deliver a beautiful long shot and whitewashed Murphy in the eighth frame 93-0.

In the deciding frame, both got chances to win, but Murphy took the frame 76-45 to seal the win.

"I tried my best, but it seemed I was not lucky enough when face him (Murphy)," said Ding, who lost all four encounters with Murphy this year.

World champion John Higgins also reached the quarterfinals after beating Mark King 5-1.

Higgins had a dreamly beginning with an impressive 88 clearance to take the first frame. Then, Mark King levelled with 67-12.

The rest four frames became Higgins's sole dance with runs of 71, 62, 106 and 116, missing the green in the last frame when set for a tournament-high 141.

"I would love to win this tournament as I've only won one in Asia which is not a good record," said Higgins, who won the China International in 1999.

"To win would give me confidence going into Sheffield that I can defend my world title and play some good snooker."

"It was a good performance today. Yesterday's match was scrappy and I'm lucky to still be in the tournament. But I got some confidence from making a good break in the last frame." added Higgins.

On other tables, Stephen Maguire recovered from the loss of the first frame to beat Barry Hawkins 5-2, while Mark Selby enjoyed an easy 5-2 win over Marco Fu of Hong Kong, China.

Maguire will take on Bond who thrashed Barry Pinches 5-1 with breaks of 104, 47, 100, 49 and 70.

(Xinhua News Agency March 28, 2008)

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