THE Australian Goldfields Open was turned upside down as the underdogs had their day at Bendigo Stadium yesterday.
Three of snooker’s biggest stars were dumped in the second-round.
Defending champion Barry Hawkins was defeated 5-4 by English counterpart and world No. 25 Tom Ford.
Both players missed several straight-forward pots towards the end of the ninth frame.
It was Ford who eventually got a match-winning break to clinch the decider 72-47.
“On paper it looked a better match than it was because we both missed some balls,” Ford said.
“Even when I got in and made a break, I think Barry missed a ball to let me in.
“It was vice-versa as well.”
Hawkins had three of the four highest breaks and scored more points (479-431) for the match.
Ford advances to tonight’s quarter-final showdown with Robert Milkins from 7pm.
Milkins, the world No. 17, demolished another Englishman, Rory McLeod, 5-2 yesterday.
Four consecutive breaks of 50-plus culminated in a 123 as he swept to a 4-0 lead to take a grip of the tie.
Meanwhile, Marco Fu turned it on in a 5-2 win over world No. 4 Shaun Murphy.
Murphy raced to a 2-0 lead before missing a crucial red ball while leading 56-0 in the third frame.
It allowed Fu an opening, which he took with an 80-break.
The Hong Kong star rattled-off the next four frames, before finishing the match with a break of 115.
“I think the third frame was very crucial, he missed a red and I had a chance to make a pretty crucial clearance,” Fu said.
“I think that frame turned it around. I think confidence-wise I was feeling a totally different player after that frame.”
The world No. 18 plays Dominic Dale from 1pm today at the Marong Road complex.
Meanwhile, world No. 7 Stuart Bingham started fast but then went off the boil in his 5-3 defeat to Joe Perry.
Bingham raced to a 2-0 lead, but Perry fought back to lead 3-2.
Perry’s consistency was the difference as he set up a quarter-final clash against Australian Neil Robertson from 7pm tonight.