James Cahill handed dream first-round tie against Ronnie O'Sullivan at World Championship

James Cahill
James Cahill

Blackpool’s James Cahill will take on world number one Ronnie O’Sullivan in the first round of the World Championship.

The Marton-based potter was handed the dream tie when the draw was made by World Snooker chairman Barry Hearn and 1991 world champion John Parrott.

Cahill, who made history in qualifying by becoming the first amateur to reach the tournament proper, will be looking to cause a huge shock against the pre-tournament favourite and five-time world champion.

The 23-year-old has previous form, however, having overcome Mark Selby in the UK Championship last year.

The best of 25 frames match against O’Sullivan gets underway on Monday afternoon at 2.30pm, with the first round match concluding in the Tuesday morning session, which begins at 10am.

Cahill qualified for the tournament with wins against Andrew Higginson, Michael Holt and Michael Judge.

Mark Williams will begin the defence of his World Championship title against Martin Gould on opening day at The Crucible.

The annual snooker show-piece features the world's top 16 ranked players alongside a further 16 qualifiers as they battle it out for £2.2 million in prize money from April 20 to May 6.

Williams, who claimed the sport's biggest prize for the third time with victory over John Higgins in the final last year, launches the defence of his title against former German Masters champion Martin Gould on opening Saturday in Sheffield.

Mark Selby, who has secured three world titles since 2014, begins his quest to regain the crown with a show-down against Zhao Xintong - one of six Chinese talents involved in this year's competition.

Draw in full:

Mark Williams (1) v Martin Gould

Ronnie O'Sullivan (2) v James Cahill

Mark Selby (3) v Zhao Xintong

Neil Robertson (4) v Michael Georgiou

John Higgins (5) v Mark Davis

Mark Allen (6) v Zhou Yuelong

Judd Trump (7) v Thepchaiya Un-Nooh

Kyren Wilson (8) v Scott Donaldson

Barry Hawkins (9) v Li Hang

Ding Junhui (10) v Anthony McGill

Jack Lisowski (11) v Ali Carter

Stuart Bingham (12) v Graeme Dott

Shaun Murphy (13) v Luo Honghao

Luca Brecel (14) v Gary Wilson

Stephen Maguire (15) v Tian Pengfei

David Gilbert (16) v Joe Perry