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Trump suffers first-round defeat

Judd Trump joined Ronnie O'Sullivan in making a painful first-round exit from the Shanghai Masters after falling to Dominic Dale.

After pre-tournament favourite O'Sullivan's tumble to Alan McManus on Monday, the loss of Trump on Tuesday evening caused a further major stir and was accompanied by the afternoon exit of four-time world champion John Higgins.

Trump lost 5-2 to Welshman Dale, an ever-eager showman who at the age of 42 is still playing a mean game, as was demonstrated in his run to the Crucible quarter-finals earlier this year.

A break of 100 nudged Trump into a 2-1 lead, but Dale held the upper hand thereafter, with runs of 57, 103 and 95 spurring him to a last-16 place.

Higgins was an arguably more predictable casualty as the 39-year-old fell 5-4 to Ryan Day, another Welshman having a fine day in China.

Day had trailed 4-2 but breaks of 55, 102 and 77 in successive frames saw the 34-year-old Pontycymer potter get the better of the struggling Scot, who has not reached a major semi-final for over a year.

The long-time standard-bearer for snooker in Wales, two-time Crucible winner Mark Williams, also came through a stiff test as he fended off the 2013 World Championship runner-up Barry Hawkins, pinching the decider to win 5-4 after his Dartford-based opponent produced a break of 144 in the eighth frame.

Ken Doherty set up a first-round clash with reigning world champion Mark Selby after beating Chinese amateur Huang Jiahao 5-3 in their wild-card tussle.

China's leading light Ding Junhui began his campaign with a promising 5-1 win over Englishman Jack Lisowski, the highlight being his break of 128 in the fifth frame, while Zhao Xintong and Fergal O'Brien were also victors on the second day of the week-long ranking tournament, which carries a first prize of £85,000.

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