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Higgins hits back to defeat Xintong in decider to reach Indian Open second round

World number three John Higgins came from two frames down to defeat Zhao Xintong of China 4-3 as he battled through to the second round of the Indian Open in Vizag.

The Scot, runner-up to Mark Selby in the 2017 World Championship final, found himself trailing 2-0 against the 20-year-old, who last month reached the fourth round at the Paul Hunter Classic.

However, unanswered breaks of 77 and then 88 levelled things up, before Higgins edged a tense fifth frame only for Zhao to force a decider which the Wizard of Wishaw secured with a composed clearance of 87.

Elsewhere on Wednesday, defending champion Anthony McGill saw off England's Ashley Hugill 4-1, but veteran Scot Alan McManus went down 4-3 against 23-year-old Gateshead potter Elliot Slessor.

Shaun Murphy, the world number five, produced a 4-0 demolition of Hammad Miah, while Stuart Bingham recorded a 4-1 win over Welshman Duane Jones and Gary Wilson put out world number 15 Luca Brecel after his 4-1 victory which included a break of 103.

Dominic Dale progressed to round two following a 4-1 win over Rod Lawler and Thailand's Akani Songsermsawad recorded a 4-3 victory over Stephen Maguire, the Scot ranked number 20.

In the early session, Northern Ireland's Mark Allen coasted past Niu Zhuang 4-0.

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