Murphy makes his point
Bingham and Allen both denied debut wins in Carlisle
Last Updated: 13/09/12 11:20pm
Shaun Murphy battled back from 3-0 down to claim his first point of the 2012 PartyPoker.com Premier League snooker campaign against debutant Stuart Bingham.
Former Australian Open champion Bingham looked set to mark his Premier League debut with a win, however Murphy displayed plenty of fighting spirit to level a highly-entertaining match 3-3.
Murphy, who lost his Group A opener 4-2 against Ding Junhui in Skegness two weeks ago, found himself in immediate trouble as a break of 58 and a cool 68 clearance put Basildon potter Bingham 2-0 ahead.
Breaks of 59 and 46 guaranteed Bingham at least a point, but Murphy kept himself alive with an 88 clearance in frame four.
A run of 58 and a tight safety from Murphy forced an error from Bingham, who potted the white, and Murphy returned to the table to cut the gap to one frame.
A draw looked inevitable when Murphy amassed a run of 42 in the final frame but a potted cue-ball brought Bingham to the table. He added a run of 49 to move ahead, however a missed black gave Murphy another opportunity, which he took to grab a share of the spoils.
Speaking afterwards, Murphy told Sky Sports 2HD: "It feels like a win!
"It's a tough school this league. I didn't feel I played badly in my first game, I thought I played alright tonight. It's really, really tough, this could be the hardest year ever."
Wildcard John Higgins then kicked off his campaign with a low-quality 4-2 triumph over Mark Allen.
Allen, also making his debut in the competition, took the opening frame with a run of 67 but Higgins pinched a scrappy second to level.
The third frame was also littered with missed pots but it was Higgins, who produced a sublime reverse double on the pink, who took it to move 2-1 ahead.
A break of 38 in frame four was Higgins' highest of the evening at that stage but a response worth 49 from Allen handed the Irishman the frame 70-58 and squared the contest.
Higgins looked much more assured in the fifth frame while errors continued to flow from Allen's cue. The Scot guaranteed himself his first point of the campaign by taking the frame 95-39 and took a long-winded deciding frame to claim the two points.