Snooker - Lights go out on faulty Ding as Murphy seals Masters win

Ding Junhui seemed to suffer a personal power cut in losing 6-4 to Shaun Murphy on a day when a black-out at the Masters tournament saw play delayed for over an hour.

With around one thousand fans left in the dark and the first round match starting at 2:15pm rather than 1pm due to no lights around the Alexandra Palace in North London, Murphy won the final four frames to progress having trailed 2-0 and 4-2 against the 2011 Masters winner.

Murphy - who walked out to John Williams's Superman score - was thrilled with his effort in reeling Ding in after the delay.

He lost to Neil Robertson in the 2012 Masters final while Robertson again accounted for him in the last four a year ago and looked to be heading for the exit door here until Chinese hopeful Ding collapsed.

A slimmed down Murphy has lost three stones in the past few months, and he said: "Power cut, the walk on music...I don't know what it was, but that is a massive win for me in terms of the season, and how my results have been going.

[Snooker fans left in the dark…literally, after Ally Pally black-out]

"I've been working hard, but getting nothing for it. The turn of the New Year is perhaps the turn of the tide for me.

"I think the power cut is not the end of the world. The tennis have it all the time with their rain delays.

"It is just the way it is. We were having a laugh about it. I practice in a Conservative Club, and you put 50p in the slot before the lights go out.

"I'm used to playing in the dark. It doesn't make any difference to me.

"I've felt this season, I've been there or thereabouts. I had a 147 last week in the Championship League while I lost narrowly to Ding in Shanghai, an event he won.

"That goes to show I'm playing well. Who knows? Perhaps this result can be the turning point."

[The Masters schedule and century breaks]

Murphy added: "Snooker is not as easy as it looks. We've been blessed with our legends who have gone before who have made the game look easy.

"I watched the PDC darts over the Christmas period. The walk on music is your opportunity to show a bit of fun. I had Its a kind of magic and Pirates of the Caribbean, but I've always been a big Superman man since I was six.

"Fortunately, Ding didn't have any kryptonite with him today."

The first four frames were split between the two men.

Murphy did not make a mistake yet was forced to watch Ding stride into a 2-0 lead with breaks of 99 and 84.

Ding had a chance to extend his advantage, but failing to stun in a mid-range red provided Murphy with the chance to compile an impressive 71 before a 64 in the fourth frame was good enough to draw level at 2-2.

Murphy was forced to sit and suffer after seeing a red struggle out in the fifth frame. He should have potted it, but Ding was not for missing as a lovely 70 saw him restore his lead at 3-2.

The sixth frame was the first real scrappy one of a match that was by now exuding obvious quality, but Ding pieced together the necessary points for a 4-2 advantage. But that seemed to be it from Ding as he collapsed like the 'Ally Pally' electrics.

Murphy seemed to benefit from Ding's game descending strangely into a state of torpor from that stage onwards with knocks of 56, 46, 46 and 43 helping him through after some error-strewn frames.

He will face Marco Fu in the last eight.

Ding contributed to his own downfall. He has not won a match at the Masters since claiming the title by overcoming Fu in 2011.

"I had a couple of days to practice, but I wasn't ready," said Ding. "I needed to spend some time in China before I came back.

"This is a big tournament. I played well in a few frames, but not the whole match. I really need some practice. I had lots of chances, but just wasted them every time.

"I don't like this place. I never win here..not since Wembley."