England’s Stuart Bingham admits he rode his luck on Tuesday after battling his way into the second round of the World Championship by beating Scotland’s Graeme Dott.
Bingham went into the game as the favourite after some superb results of late, with the 42-year-old winning the English Open and 2019 Gibraltar Open.
He looked in total control, with an 8-1 lead, before Dott nearly pulled off one of the best comebacks in history.
Bingham made a shocking start to the evening session and Dott soon found his rhythm after breaks of 114, 70 and 77. At 9-4, Dott looked in trouble before he roared back to force a decider.
World number 12 Bingham then scored 35 to push clear and admitted after the match he was fortunate.
He told World Snooker: “This morning I felt really good, I was taking every chance I got. This evening Graham took the game to me. I didn’t really do much wrong to lose the first three frames, so I was trying to stay positive. How I got over the line in the end I’ll never know, I was shaking.
“Everything was going against me, everything was going wrong. After the three misses, things went from bad to worse. I just wanted a chance in the balls. I had a couple of opportunities. Maybe I should have been more aggressive as I was trying to pick off reds rather than open the pack up. Somehow in the decider I made a break to get ahead and managed to stay in control.”
Bingham is as big as 13.00 to win the event but will need to overcome John Higgins in round two.
Higgins is 1.67 to win, while Bingham is the 2.20 outsider.
Barry Hawkins and Kyren Wilson are both in action on Wednesday and they are expected to record routine wins over Li Hang and Scott Donaldson respectively.
Jack Lisowski and Allister Carter will also meet in the final game of the day and the former remains 1.75 to win, with Carter 2.00 to advance into round two.