Thursday, December 3, 2020


John Higgins out of China Open as Joe OConnor reacts to madness of beating the four-time world champion AGAIN

John Higgins is out early in Beijing (Picture: VCG via Getty Images)
John Higgins has been dumped ou..

By Sunday Herald Team , in Sports , at April 2, 2019

John Higgins is out early in Beijing (Picture: VCG via Getty Images)

John Higgins has been dumped out of the China Open in the first round, suffering his second defeat to Leicesters Joe OConnor in the last two months.

The world number 84, OConnor, ousted Higgins from the Welsh Open in February and has now eliminated him in Beijing in two of the biggest results of his young career.

The 23-year-old reached the semi-finals at the Welsh, his first run to the final four of a ranking event as he continues his rise up the rankings.

OConnor now meets Hossein Vafaei in the last 32, with a guaranteed £11,000 to add to his ranking points.

Its another huge win for Joe OConnor (Picture: VCG via Getty Images)

Yeah its strange, beating a top player twice in so short a time, OConnor told World Snooker. I think John wasnt at his best today and I played quite well.

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After the break he was frozen out a bit and Im really pleased.

I think the surrealness came in the Welsh, Im still not over that and this is adding to that, its madness really.

Potting more balls than him is the first place to start. He didnt play his best and I just did enough to win, its just hanging in here, dont lose your head. My temperaments quite good.

Barry Hawkins also fell early at the China Open (Picture: VCG via Getty Images)

Higgins had seemed to be turning his form around, with two quarter-finals and a semi-final in his last three tournaments, but now he heads to the World Championship without any momentum at all.

Barry Hawkins was another top 10 player to suffer an early loss as he was beaten 6-5 by Lu Ning in the last 64.

More: Snooker

Higgins and Hawkins follow Mark Selby out of the competition after the

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