After the disappointment of losing 10-2 in the first round, against Stuart Bingham the last time Sam was at the Crucible he was determined to do better this time. His opponent was Michael White, ranked 15 in the world. Michael is very much an attacking player who can reel off frames very quickly, if you allow him table time. A recent meeting between the two on the European Tour saw Sam run out the winner, therefore he was optimistic about the encounter.
After the first session Sam finished with a 108 break to take a 5-4 lead into the second half of the match. On resumption Michael was to hit back to turn the match around to lead 6-5 before they then shared frames to make the score 7-6 to Michael. Sam then held his nerve and finished strongly taking the last four frames to win 10-7......his first Crucible victory. This moves Sam up seven places to 46 in the provisional rankings. Next up Mark Selby or Rob Milkins......'Follow the Baird'
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