Welsh Open snooker: Shaun Murphy rejects rumours of losing on purpose
Shaun Murphy was left stunned after being asked whether he deliberately lost his opening match at the Welsh Open.
Last Updated: 13/02/13 11:37am
The Englishman was beaten 4-3 by Indian Pankaj Advani, the current world billiards champion who is playing on the main snooker tour for the first time this season.
Murphy received a Twitter message last night from a user whose account appeared to have been later deleted, saying: "Rumours going round you match fixed tonights game Shaun??? Any truth??"
Englishman Murphy, the 2005 world champion, was taken aback by the suggestion and replied: "Absolutely not-ouch."
He later added: "Worst day of my career today, being accused of losing on purpose."
Murphy, 30, was swiftly backed by fellow players, with Northern Ireland's Mark Allen writing on the social network: "Don't be silly mate. We all know its a pile if c**p!!! Never a more untrue word spoke. Chin up."
Last year's World Championship runner-up Ali Carter called Murphy "an asset to the game", and former world number three Neal Foulds added: "Nobody in snooker believes that of u. Its a 100% non-starter. Great match to watch. As the cliche goes, shame there was a loser."
Murphy had trailed 3-1 against Advani before fighting back to force a deciding frame. Once there, Advani opened up a commanding lead, and although Murphy played on needing snookers he could not find a way back.