Kurt Maflin: Chinese worm bite leaves player snookered


The worm that turned… on Maflin. The player recovered from the unusual incident though

From lost cues to broken tips, questionable food to even more questionable venues – life for a touring snooker player can be a testing one.

Now worm bites can be added to the list.

That’s right. London-born Norwegian Kurt Maflin was left stunned by an unusual problem during the World Open ranking event in China.

World Open scores and results

“I woke up on Monday and had this bite on my right thumb, it was a bit swollen,” he told World Snooker. “I thought it must have been a mosquito.

“I played that day and managed to win. On Monday night the thumb was bigger but I thought it was nothing major. I popped it and some of the stuff came out. After that it was weeping all night. By Tuesday morning my thumb was huge, twice the size of the other one.”

The 32-year-old went to see a doctor who told him he had been bitten by a worm. It was explained to Maflin that he was not in danger and after taking medication the world number 50 booked his place in the last 16 with a 5-0 win over Xiao Guodong.

“Sometimes that happens, when you have a small injury or a cold you concentrate better,” he added. “But I’ve never heard of someone getting bitten by a worm before.”

Selby suffers surprise defeat

World champion Mark Selby was knocked out of the second round of the tournament by Thai player Thepchaiya Un-Nooh.

The 31-year-old from Leicester missed a straightforward yellow when he was 4-3 down which allowed Un-Nooh to secure a memorable win.

There was also a shock exit for Crucible runner-up Ding Junhui on home soil as he lost 5-1 to England’s Ben Woollaston.

Pre-tournament favourite Judd Trump was defeated 5-2 by China’s Zhang Anda in yet another surprise.

John Higgins, Ali Carter, Shaun Murphy, Neil Robertson, Mark Williams, Ryan Day and Alan McManus, who won five frames in a row to beat China’s Liang Wenbo, all reached the last 16.

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