UK Snooker Bet of the Day: Stuttering Selby can fall to improving Hawkins again

Barry Hawkins has a clear recent edge over Selby
Barry Hawkins has a clear recent edge over Selby

The defending champion has reached the UK Championship quarter-finals but Mark Selby isn't playing well by his own admission. Paul Krishnamurty reckons backing his next opponent is a no-brainer... 

"Hawkins...has undoubtably improved over the past year. The way the draw is panning out, he has every chance of setting up a return encounter with Ronnie on Sunday."

If past head-to-head records represent any sort of guide, Barry Hawkins rates the standout bet amongst UK Championship quarter-finals. Out of ten matches, (outside the Championship League where their record is 1-1), Hawkins leads 6-4, including four of the last six. Moreover, Hawkins has done it on the big stage, knocking Selby out of the last two World Championships.

Nor could one say the favourite has shown better form to reach this stage. Selby's snooker has been patchy to say the least, needing to battle hard against vastly inferior opposition in the first two rounds. In fairness, the world number two rose to each occasion but he was the first to admit that he was 'there for the taking' against Graeme Dott. In contrast, Hawkins scored well, hitting two tons, throughout an impressive victory over Shaun Murphy.

Many of us have been guilty of underestimating Hawkins in the recent past. His run to the world final from a brutal draw, where it's unlikely anyone else would have fared better against Ronnie O'Sullivan, included two big upsets against Selby and Ding. I still regard Hawkins as generally inferior to their class of player but he has undoubtably improved over the past year. The way the draw is panning out, he has every chance of setting up a return encounter with Ronnie on Sunday so an outright trade at 24.023/1 also offers plenty of trading mileage. 


Recommended bets

Back Barry Hawkins 3u @ 2.77/4 to beat Mark Selby
Back Barry Hawkins 2u @ 24.023/1 to win the tournament


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