All the big names were still present in round three, as the likely suspects made it through Tuesday's evening session in Cardiff. Nine of the top ten seeds donned their cues for an intriguing day in the Welsh Open.
The 2015 champion continues to look good despite an English invasion
Reigning champion John Higgins continued to look solid as he ended Michael Georgiou's run of defeating higher ranked players with a comfortable 4-1 victory, including a century break in the first frame. As home numbers dwindled, local hero Mark Williams progressed to the next round with a 4-2 victory over Norway's Kurt Maflin.
The English continued to dominate on enemy soil with Joe Perry producing a 130 break on his way to defeating Ken Doherty. German Masters champion Martin Gould set up an intriguing last 16 tie with Ben Woollaston, a man tipped for the future. Gould produced a 107 break in the deciding frame against Matthew Stevens, whilst Woollaston ground out a victory after being 3-2 down against compatriot Anthony Hamilton.
The world's best still has his sights set on the title
World number one Mark Selby still has not reached top gear but disposed of Fergal O'Brien 4-2, whilst Barry Hawkins recovered from 2-1 down to defeat Mark Davis by the same scoreline. Two English players who could not progress further were Matthew Selt and a sloppy Shaun Murphy who gifted the fourth frame to his opponent when he potted the cue ball after the black. Selt was defeated in a spirited performance against Ding Junhui, who sets up a last 16 tie against the impressive youngster Luca Brecel, who saw off fifth seed Murphy in the surprise result of the day.
Hong Kong's Marco Fu and Australia's Neil Robertson both came from behind against Scottish opponents Graeme Dott and Anthony McGill, to set up the only southern hemisphere tie of the tournament. The results leave John Higgins as the only representative from north of the border.
Welsh duo Michael White and Ryan Day have difficult evening matches against Liang Wenbo and Mark Allen respectively, as they seek to join Williams in the next round. Ronnie O'Sullivan would expect to beat Jimmy Robertson, whilst Judd Trump will be looking to overcome a potential banana skin in Alan McManus.