Masters snooker: Shaun Murphy and Ronnie O'Sullivan earn contrasting first-round wins

Last Updated: 14/01/14 9:23pm

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Shaun Murphy: Fought back impressively to set up a showdown with Marco Fu

Shaun Murphy: Fought back impressively to set up a showdown with Marco Fu

Sky Bet

Shaun Murphy rallied from 4-2 down to record a 6-4 victory over Ding Junhui, while Ronnie O'Sullivan raced to a 6-1 win against Robert Milkins on Tuesday at the Masters.

Former world champion Murphy set up a clash with Marco Fu by taking four frames in a row to decide a see-saw afternoon clash that saw neither man manage a century.

Ding recorded the highest break of the match when he knock in 99 in the opening frame once play finally got underway after an 80-minute delay due to a power-cut at Alexandra Palace.

The man from China doubled his advantage with 84 in the next, meaning Murphy was 2-0 down and still yet to muster a solitary point.

However the 2012 runner-up fought back, scores of 71 and 64 seeing him get on level terms by the interval.

Ding swiftly regained his two-frame lead but then missed a couple of relatively straightforward pots for 5-2, and instead a break of 56 from Murphy allowed him to close to 4-3.

The Englishman made it 4-4 with a 46 clearance after seeing his opponent miss a late red with the rest before moving ahead for the first time by edging a tight ninth frame.

Milkins runs dry

World champion O'Sullivan took centre stage in the evening and reeled off the opening five frames against fellow Englishman Milkins, helped by breaks of 84, 91, 62 and 59.

Milkins, making his tournament debut at the Alexandra Palace event, at least managed to avoid a whitewash by taking the sixth frame, greeting the decisive pot with an ironic fist pump.

But the comeback ended there as O'Sullivan - who has won this tournament four times including as a teenager in 1995 - closed out the result at the next opportunity.

He will play Barry Hawkins or Ricky Walden in the last eight.

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