Snooker star Perry knocked out of China Open after Murphy launches stunning comeback

SNOOKER ace Joe Perry was knocked out of the China Open in the first round yesterday after a 5-3 defeat to former world champion Shaun Murphy.

The Fen Potter beat young Chinese star Li Yan to reach the tournament in Beijing but was unable to progress any further.

Perry, from Chatteris, made three half-century breaks to race into a 3-1 lead at the interval but Murphy stunned the Chatteris star by winning four frames in a row.

He will now return home to begin preparations for the world championships, where he faces seven-time world champion Stephen Hendry in the first round.

The tournament begins on April 16, when defending champion Neil Robertson will take on 21-year-old talent Judd Trump.

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