sport

Murphy survives Cope scare

The 2005 world champion Shaun Murphy survived a huge scare before reaching the second round of this year's event at the Crucible.

Murphy came back from 7-5 down to beat fellow Englishman Jamie Cope in a late-night thriller.

Cope led 5-4 heading into the evening session and had a good chance for a maximum break of 147 in the 10th frame but blundered on the ninth red and Murphy stepped in to steal the frame with a 75 clearance.

Cope won the next two frames but Murphy then used breaks of 68, 52 and 58 to win four of the next five and go 9-8 up.

However, Cope won the 18th to force a tense decider which went down to the colours before Murphy made the decisive break to win it 65-49.

"If that's what this tournament has got in store for me, I want to go home!" said a relieved Murphy.

"The first round is like a bloodbath. I've lost my fair share of deciders here and it doesn't get any easier. I'm just pleased to get over the line.

"They are the type of matches that, as players, we all watch at home and in hotel rooms. To play in and be a part of it is mentally scarring."

Cope has battled the snooker yips because of a tremor that affects his cueing and recently brought in a sports psychologist to help with the problem.

He said: "I just couldn't control my arm today.

"In the past few weeks I've taken some big steps forward but this was a big step back. I don't know why I felt the way I did."

Sunday results:

Ken Doherty (Ire) 10-5 Stuart Bingham (Eng)

Allister Carter (Eng) 10-8 Xiao Guodong (Chn)

Ryan Day (Wal) 10-9 Stephen Maguire (Sco)

Shaun Murphy (Eng) 10-9 Jamie Cope (Eng)