The first round matches are completing, and Tursday sees the start of the Second Round. The best betting opportunities are previewed below

Recommendations

Ken Doherty to beat Alan McManus at 11/10 BetVictor

Ali Carter to beat Mark Selby at 6/4 BetVictor

The following two matches of the six second round line ups that are now decided look to represent the best opportunities for underdogs to progress to the quarter finals at odds-against

Alan McManus v Ken Doherty

Both players beat seeds in the first round. McManus, making the second round for the first time since 2005, beat John Higgins 10-7 whilst former world champion Doherty beat Stuart Bingham 10-5. Over best of 25 frames this will be a long and tight match and McManus has been priced as 10/11 favourite, Doherty 11/10.

I think there is a reaosnable chance that these prices are the wrong way round and that Dherty should be favourite. McManus is a superb tactical safety player but did not have to score heavily to beat Higgins, who made notable mistakes in the first round match. Doherty on the other hand convincingly beat Bingham.
Doherty is the higher ranked player 28 to 35, and neither have had the limelight and pressure of a last sixteen match in a ranking tournament for some time.

We are able to get with Doherty at 11/10 with Bet Victor, and I think we should.

Mark Selby v Ali Carter

Both had very tough first round matches. Selby squeaked past Michael White 10-9 and Carter beat the talented Chinese player Xiao Guodong 10-8. Selby is priced up at 4/6 to beat the lower seed Carter, in at 6/4.  Just like the first match discussed, this could well be extremely close. Carter, who this column tipped up as each way value pre-tournament, is a teak tough matchplay player, with a great temperament that he has shown when reaching the final of this tournament twice last as recently as 2012. The way he closed the match out against young tyro Xiao was very impressive.

Selby has tended not to match his results on the circuit the year round when he gets to the crucible. Against Carter, he will be tested and the 6/4 BetVictor price on Carter represents a fair shot at an upset here.

Of the other matches would expect Ronnie O’Sullivan to beat Joe Perry, Barry Hawkins to beat Ricky Walden and the Shaun Murphy-Marco Fu match is too close to call

Recommendations

Ken Doherty to beat Alan McManus at 11/10 BetVictor

Ali Carter to beat Mark Selby at 6/4 BetVictor