Michael White wins the Paul Hunter Classic as Shaun Murphy falls at the final hurdle again

Michael White wins the Paul Hunter Classic as Shaun Murphy falls at the final hurdle again

Murphy has now lost successive ranking finals after being defeated by Luca Brecel in the China Championship last week.

chris-lincoln
Chris Lincoln

2005 World champion Shaun Murphy is still awaiting his first ranking title of the year as Michael White capped a stellar week with a 4-2 victory in Germany.

Murphy was looking to go a step further than his performance in the China Championship last week when Luca Brecel saw off the experienced campaigner. Yet Murphy was subject to another shock as World number 26, White, earned the second ranking title of his career.

2015 World champion Bingham departs early again

The outcome could have been much different for White as he almost got knocked out in the first round. Amateur Adam Duffy stormed into a 3-1 lead only to be pegged back by the 2015 Indian Open winner.

With numerous big names including Ronnie O'Sullivan, John Higgins, Neil Robertson and Ding Junhui absent, the tournament provided an opportunity for some of their fellow top sixteen colleagues to find some form. Yet Stuart Bingham continued a lacklustre run of form when he was thrashed 4-0 in the opening round by Yu Delu.

World number one and defending champion Mark Selby appeared to be favourite to retain his crown, following a tournament-high break of 143 in a comfortable win against Michael Holt with an easy victory against amateur Michael Williams in the last 64.

Yet both Ricky Walden and Luca Brecel failed to progress past the second round as they lost to Stuart Carrington and Mark King respectively.

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Selby halted by White as Mann enjoys a week to remember

As Murphy and White stepped up their form with 4-0 victories in the third round, number seven seed David Gilbert was on the receiving end of one of the surprise results of the competition, losing 4-3 to Norfolk amateur George Pragnell.

Selby blundered through against Joe Swail before the World champion saw his competition cut short in the last sixteen. White cruised past him with a 4-1 victory as his title credentials were cemented further.

Mark King was halted by Mark Joyce whilst the unseeded Ian Burns stunned number four Kyren Wilson with a final frame win.

Number 48 seed Mitchell Mann had quietly squeezed into the quarter-finals after never progressing past the last 32 in a ranking event. He then went a step further as he saw off Joyce whilst Burns was eventually thwarted by White.

No problems for White as Murphy fails to repeat semi-final heroics

Mann was eventually thwarted by White in a low-scoring semi-final, though more drama unfolded between Murphy and the unfancied Jamie Jones. Wales' Jones raced into a 3-1 lead before three successive half-century breaks saw Murphy edge into the final.

Murphy again fell 3-1 behind in the title decider after the pair exchanged 80 breaks. The seven-time ranking winner won an edgy fifth frame to give himself hope before White sealed his second ranking title with a break of 97.

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