White to continue maiden Crucible march against Poomjaeng
Having won the all-Welsh battle against Mark Williams in the first round, Michael White will now be seeking to prolong his first ever Crucible experience.
The 21-year-old from Neath should do just that against Thailand’s maverick potter Dechawat Poomjaeng, another making his first appearance at the World Championship but a player perhaps left with little in the tank following his gruelling final frame victory over Stephen Maguire.
White, who is the 1/2 favourite for the contest, was hugely impressive in seeing off the two-time former Crucible champion Williams 10-6 in the first round, and will be facing Poomjaeng without any fears given that he beat him 4-1 in their pair’s only previous meeting in 2011.
Should the 13/8 Thai – who applauded his own shots in the Maguire win – prove successful then he is likely to win in another marathon contest, with the 6/5 on offer for over 22 frames to be played in the first to 13 match no doubt proving tempting for those wishing to back the underdog.
Ultimately though, White – who is 13 years Poomjaeng’s junior – should have enough to see off his opponent comfortably, with 4/1 for White to win by 3-4 frames and 9/2 for a 5-6 frame win looking the best bets.
The other second round match to get underway on Thursday sees a meeting of former champions as Shaun Murphy and Graeme Dott come face-to-face in a contest which is unlikely to be for the faint-hearted.
Murphy holds a 5-2 career record against the infamously durable Dott, who will be seeking to drag out the contest in the hope that he can break the resolve of the 4/9 favourite.
Ultimately though, it should be Murphy who eventually sees off the Scot, with the 2005 champion available at 10/11 to win with a -2.5 frame handicap.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.