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O'Sullivan sets up Higgins clash in quarterfinals

RONNIE O'Sullivan survived a tough outing against China's Xiao Guodong last night to set up an enticing quarterfinal clash with John Higgins at the China Open in Beijing.

World No. 1 O'Sullivan was taken the distance by Xiao, conqueror of his more famous compatriot Ding Junhui, before emerging with a 5-3 victory.

"The Rocket" made breaks of 135 and 124 to take a 2-0 lead but Xiao refused to go away and recovered to trail 2-3.

The players exchanged frames to take the score to 4-3 to the Englishman, before the world champion wrapped up the match with a break of 96.

Shaun Murphy of England also reached the last eight by defeating Neil Robertson of Australia 5-1 in the evening session. He will face Welshman Ryan Day, who ousted England's Mark King 5-2.

Scotland's Graeme Dott joined Murphy in the quarterfinals, after seeing off another Englishman Mark Selby 5-1 with a commanding display which included four half-centuries and a break of 109 in the second frame. Dott takes on Stuart Pettman of England.

Earlier, Scotland's Higgins comfortably beat Tian Pengfei of China 5-2.

The two-time world champion got off to a flying start with a break of 132 to take the opening frame, and made a second century in frame five.

Pettman came from 0-2 down to upset Welsh Open champion and compatriot Ali Carter 5-2.

World No. 7 Carter was the favorite to go through against Pettman, who is ranked a lowly 62nd, but consecutive breaks of 61, 62, 42, 68 and 54 gave the underdog a famous win.

Scotland's Stephen Hendry edged English qualifier Ricky Walden 5-4 to set up a quarterfinal clash with Peter Ebdon, a 5-3 winner over English compatriot Dave Harold.


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