World Snooker: Mark Allen through to face Ronnie O'Sullivan in second round

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Mark Allen

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Antrim's Mark Allen came through a tough opening test against Scott Donaldson at the Betfred World Championship by a 10-6 scoreline, and will try to revive memories of his only previous Crucible meeting with Ronnie O’Sullivan when the pair go head to head in the second round.

World number 15 Allen looked in danger when Donaldson came from 7-4 down to 7-6, but he finished strongly to take the last three frames and set up a best-of-25 clash with O’Sullivan which starts on Friday morning.

Allen’s first career meeting with O’Sullivan came in Sheffield in 2009 and he won 13-11 en route to the semi-finals. He has a fair record against the Rocket, winning four of their ten matches, and hopes another will go his way this time.

“It’s what we play the game for. You want to play your best game on the biggest stage,” said 36-year-old Allen, who has reached the Crucible quarter-finals just once in the past decade. “The only time I played Ronnie in Sheffield, I beat him. So I have to try and keep those memories fresh. The task is tough, but Ronnie has been coming here for 30 years, and he’s won six titles. That means he’s lost 24.

“I’ll go out there, hopefully play well, and try to keep control of myself. He looks in a good place so far, but we all know it can turn very quickly with Ronnie so it’s up to me to go out there on Friday and Saturday and play the best I can and get under his skin. He’s a genius, but he is beatable.”

Antrim's Mark Allen came through a tough opening test against Scott Donaldson 

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