The first day of the Totesport.com Welsh Open was a rather flat affair due to a low crowd turnout and some uninspiring snooker.
Andrew Higginson played very well to lead Marco Fu 4-0 and both Neil Robertson and Ali Carter showed glimpses of their best form but, overall, it wasn’t great stuff.
This happens at every tournament, indeed in every sport.
Today, Ronnie O’Sullivan returns to action after losing his epic Masters final to Mark Selby at Wembley nine days ago.
It seems if you so much as mention Ronnie you upset someone, so I’ll just say I hope he produces a performance he is satisfied with.
Dave Harold has beaten Stephen Hendry four times but his last win came just over a decade ago.
It was Harold who Hendry beat shortly after fracturing a bone in his elbow (or breaking his arm as the headlines screamed at the time) at the 1994 World Championship.
Hendry has declined as a force but is still a big draw. Next month, he will face Ding Junhui in a best of 25 frames televised match in Beijing – no short formats for them, they prefer proper matches – to be screened on 110sport.tv.
But the legendary Scot doesn’t want to be merely applauded as one of the game’s elder statesmen. He wants to win and, after a disappointing defeat to Martin Gould at Newport last year, will be highly focused against the Stoke potter.
Shaun Murphy has dealt Matthew Stevens two massive blows, both at the Crucible.
In 2005, he beat him 18-16 in the final. Three years ago he came from 12-7 down to edge the Welshman 13-12 in the quarter-finals and relegate him from the top 16.
Stevens scrapped over the line against Barry Pinches but there needn’t be much read into this. First rounds are often about falling over the line.
However, Stevens has a poor record in his home event. He hasn’t reached the last 16 of the Welsh Open since 2006 and will need to produce something to see off Murphy, who finished runner-up in Newport that same year.