Robertson overcomes passport issues to make it into second round of inaugural International Championship
17:52 GMT, 28 October 2012
Neil Robertson advanced to the second round of the inaugural International Championship in Chengdu before revealing a passport mix-up almost cost him his place in the tournament.
Former world champion Robertson beat Welshman Ryan Day 6-3 in the evening session to set-up a potential meeting with Matthew Stevens in the next round.
But the Australian, who is currently living in England, had visa issues ahead of his trip to China and could have missed the chance to win the new 600,000 world ranking event.
Going through: Neil Robertson made it into the second round in in Chengdu
'The past week has been a nightmare,” he told worldsnooker.com.
'I sent the passport recorded delivery to the DVLA's Peterborough office, but then they sent it by normal post to Swansea and then back to me. The Post Office was no help and I couldn't track it.
'The passport finally turned up at my house half an hour before I was due to leave to go to Heathrow to fly to Shanghai. So I just had to hope that when I arrived they would give me a visa.'
Robertson also praised the sport's governing body for supporting him during the mishap and thanked the staff who sorted the visa upon landing in China.
He said: 'Luckily World Snooker helped me a lot and I was able to provide all of the supporting documents to prove that I am a snooker player and I was going to the biggest tournament in China.
'As it turned out, the immigration staff in Shanghai all knew who I was and wanted pictures with me.
'I was there for about five hours, then I was given the visa and was able to fly to Chengdu. Obviously it was not ideal preparation so I'm just really pleased to have played well tonight and got the result.'
Shaun Murphy labelled the new tournament the “fourth major” on the snooker calendar.
The 30-year-old Englishman needed only 89 minutes to secure a spot in the second round, seeing off compatriot Andrew Higginson 6-0 with breaks of 67, 52, 86 and 96.
Murphy, who lifted the World Championship title in 2005, revealed he has been looking forward to what he considers an important new fixture in the sport.
'It's been a long time coming this tournament, and it's exciting to come to a city in the west of China where we've never been before,' he said.
'In terms of ranking points and prize money it's on a par with the UK Championship, so it can be seen as the fourth major.'
Jamie Burnett will face fellow Scot Stephen Maguire in the first round after beating Niu Zhuang 6-0 in their wild-card match.
Aditya Mehta of India also reached the first round proper after seeing off Zhu Yinghui 6-5.
He is joined in the final 32 by countryman Pankaj Advani after his wild-card opponent Zhou Yuelong pulled out of the tournament.
Fergal O'Brien set up a first round match against Judd Trump after a 6-3 success over Chen Feilong.
Three other wild-card matches were completed earlier in the day with 14-year-old Lu Haotian coming from 5-2 down to beat Michael White 6-5 in front of his home support.
White, who required treatment on an ankle he injured playing tennis yesterday, was forced to compete in just his socks to try and minimise the pain.
Lu will now progress directly into the second round after receiving a bye due to Ronnie O'Sullivan's decision to pull out of the tournament.
Veteran Ken Doherty also bowed out to youthful Chinese opposition, the Irishman losing 6-5 to 15-year-old Zhao Xintong.
The all-Chinese tie between Cao Yupeng and Wang Yuchen saw the former fight from 4-1 down to secure a 6-5 win and secure a meeting with John Higgins in the last 32.