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Sport in brief: Ronnie O’Sullivan holds nerve to come from behind and Master Ding

Delighted: O’Sullivan

SNOOKER: Ronnie O’ Sullivan showed all his battling qualities to come back from 5-3 down and beat Ding Junhui 6-5 in the first round of the Masters. It was a match of outstanding quality. Ding was superb early on, with breaks of 83, 75 and 73 helping him to go 3-0 up. O’Sullivan stayed in touch, with runs of 103 and 60 to close to 3-2. Brilliant breaks of 129 and 128 for Ding — either side of 100 from O’Sullivan — then made it 5-3. O’Sullivan held his nerve, however, to level at 5-5, and win the decider with a decisive 73. ‘Ding started off well, I had to keep hanging in there and stay positive,’ O’Sullivan said. ‘I dug in today. I’m delighted to still be in it.’ It’s a family affair for Collin as he aims to make amends.

Covid cases in Premiership fall for second week in row

RUGBY UNION: Premiership Rugby has reported a minor drop in coronavirus cases in the latest round of testing. Thirteen players and five members of staff across nine clubs produced positives for Covid-19 in tests on Monday and Tuesday, a reduction of one on the previous week’s total of 19. It is the second successive week the number of positives has dropped and comes after 997 personnel from the 12 Premiership clubs were tested. England’s clubs are currently on a two-week break from action.

GOLF: World No.5 Collin Morikawa has extra motivation to put a disappointing finish behind him in the second event of the PGA Tour’s Hawaii double-header. US PGA champion Morikawa ended in a tie for seventh with a final-round 73 at the Sentry Tournament of Champions in Maui. He has family ties to both Maui and Oahu, venue for this week’s Sony Open. ‘We have so many cousins I lose count,’ he joked. ‘Having family out here, my entire dad’s side, makes things a little more special and makes it feel more like home even though I never lived here.’

RUGBY UNION: Wales captain Alun Wyn Jones (pictured) is ‘coming along very nicely’ in his recovery from a knee injury, according to his Ospreys boss Toby Booth. He hopes to be fit for the Six Nations opener with Ireland on February 7.