Elliot Slessor booked his first Crucible appearance with victory over Martin O’Donnell and revealed he must now keep his promise to marry girlfriend Stephanie.

Newcastle’s Slessor, 25, reeled off the last nine frames to beat O’Donnell 10-3 in the World Championship final qualifying round.

“We had a deal that if I qualified for the Crucible we’ve got to start making plans for the wedding and start booking places, so she’ll be over the moon,” said Slessor, who will pocket £20,000 for reaching the main event.

“I don’t think she’ll be too bothered about the snooker, just over the moon to start making plans to get married.”

Slessor, who had trailed 3-1 in the first session and sealed his place on the big stage with a break of 111 in the final frame, is hoping to be paired with Ronnie O’Sullivan on his Crucible debut.

“I know a lot of people will say they don’t want to play him,” Slessor added. “But for me, if it’s busy and spectators are allowed to come in, you want to play the main man on the main stage.”

Norway’s Kurt Maflin, right, will make his Crucible debut (Nigel French/PA)
Norway’s Kurt Maflin, right, will make his Crucible debut (Nigel French/PA)

Alexander Ursenbacher became the first Swiss to reach the Crucible by edging out Andrew Higginson 10-8 and Norway’s Kurt Maflin sealed his maiden appearance by cruising to a 10-1 win against Matthew Selt.

Alan McManus clinched his first trip to the Crucible since his run to the semi-finals in 2016 by beating Louis Heathcote 10-5.

On the penultimate night of qualifying, Thailand’s Noppon Saengkham, Anthony Hamilton and Ashley Carty won through to the main event, which starts on Friday.


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