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O'Sullivan tops the bill while Allen faces tricky test

By Staff Reporter

Home favourite Mark Allen has been drawn against Mark Joyce in the first round of snooker's new Coral Northern Ireland Open at the Titanic Exhibition Centre, with Ronnie O'Sullivan the star attraction on the first night.

Antrim's Allen has lost to England's Joyce in four of their five previous meetings and will face a tough opening challenge in the world ranking event.

The tournament runs from November 14 to 20 and Allen's match will take place in the evening session on Tuesday, November 15.

O'Sullivan will face David John in the evening session on Monday, November 14, and if the Rocket comes through that match he could face Jimmy White in round two, if the Whirlwind can beat Gareth Allen.

Belfast's Joe Swail will meet Dominic Dale on the afternoon of Tuesday, November 15. Northern Ireland's top two amateurs, Patrick Wallace and Jordan Brown, will meet Michael Georgiou and Ben Woollaston respectively.

Judd Trump faces former World Champion Peter Ebdon, while English Open winner Liang Wenbo - the only man still in line for the £1m bonus for winning all the home nations events - will be up against Nigel Bond.

For the full draw and format see

The tournament, televised by Eurosport and Quest, will have 128 players battling for the £366,000 prize fund and the new Alex Higgins Trophy. For tickets telephone 0844 847 2455 or visit

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