Bingham ready to face challenge of unorthodox Sunny Akani

STUART BINGHAM admits he will need to bring his A-game to overcome the unusual style of rising star Thai Sunny Akani in their UK Championship clash tomorrow evening (Dec 6).

Former Asian junior champion Akani (pictured), 23, who has seen off Eden Sharav, James Cahill and Jak Jones to progress to the fourth round, has a distinctive approach to his shots and uses the rest in an unorthodox way.

Ballrun said: “He is one of the new breed of players coming through and has had some good results, so I am expecting a tough game.

“And he’s very deliberate in the way he plays shots, with a unique pre-shot routine, and it is hard not to get involved and watch it.

“And the way he uses the rest under his arm is also very distinctive and he plays it as though he is not even using a rest, with the cue on top of his hand. It is one of those things you have to see.

“And although he is not slow he takes his time on shots so that is something I will have to be ready for.

“But in his win last night he made four or five breaks over 50 so I will need to be at my best to progress.”

Bingham has beaten James Wattana (6-0), Kurt Maflin (6-5) and David Gilbert (6-2 and with a 145 break) so far this week at the York Barbican.

He added: “To be fair to Kurt he played very well and I am a bit fortunate to still be in after that match.

“He made five breaks over 50 to win his frames but in the decider he was on 40-odd and missed an easy green and that let me in.

“I started off like a house on fire against Dave and got in straight away and made a 145 then missed on 102 when I was on for another 145.

“Dave has improved his game this year and I knew I was in for a good game and I had to be on my game to beat him but I got the job done.”