Neil Robertson still in with a shout of defending English Open title after scraping past Lei Peifan

Defending champion Neil Robertson reached the last 32 of the English Open after beating Lei Peifan.

The 40-year-old won 4-3 despite Peifan hitting three straight centuries to force a decider on Tuesday.

Robertson had raced into a 3-0 lead but Peifan made it 3-3 with breaks of 136, 134 and 121 only for Robertson to take the seventh frame with a crucial break of 67.

Robertson is joined by Judd Trump, who beat Craig Steadman 4-1, and Mark Selby after his 4-2 win over Joe O'Connor.

UK Championship winner Mark Allen beat Dylan Emery 4-1.

Ali Carter beat Chen Zifan 4-0, Ding Junhui won his second-round match against Xu Si 4-1 and John Higgins eased past Mark King 4-1.

Marco Fu, the 2008 UK Championship runner up, reached the last 64 by beating Jimmy Robertson 4-1 having spent two years without playing between February 2020 and April 2022 amid the Covid pandemic and surgery on his eyes.

"It's nice to be back competing and playing to a decent standard. I have missed so many tournaments over the last few years," he told wst.tv.

"I enjoy being around the other players, they are like a snooker family. But when the trips are too long, it is difficult mentally, I don't feel healthy.

"The last time I came to the UK I needed to stay for three months because of the quarantine policy in Hong Kong."

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