Quarter Finals day in Glasgow saw Ronnie and Judd Trump exit the tournament, although, in my view, in very different ways. The defending champion, Mark Allen is through to the semi finals, as well as Mark Selby, Jack Lisowski and David Gilbert. Jack and David are bidding for a first ranking title this week-end.
Selby Wins Classic Contest
Mark Selby won a thrilling encounter with Ronnie O’Sullivan 5-4 to reach the semi-finals of the 19.com Scottish Open in Glasgow.
Selby is aiming to become the first player to win more than one Home Nations event in a single season. The three-time World Champion produced a sublime display to crush David Gilbert 9-1 and win the English Open title back in October.
Selby and O’Sullivan have been facing each other on the World Snooker Tour since they first met at the 2002 China Open. Selby won on that occasion and their subsequent battles have seen the fixture become one of snooker’s greatest rivalries.
Despite today’s victory for the Jester from Leicester, it’s the Rocket who holds a 14-10 lead in their head-to-head record.
This afternoon’s match saw both players fire from the start. Selby got off the mark in the opening frame with a sublime break of 120 to move 1-0 up. O’Sullivan hit back immediately with an equally impressive break of 123 to restore parity.
Selby took a scrappy third, before O’Sullivan fired in a century run of 113 to make it 2-2 at the mid-session.
When they returned O’Sullivan composed his third century of the tie with a break of 111 to take the lead for the first time at 3-2. They traded frames, until Selby forced a decider with a run of 56. He then composed a break of 63 to secure victory. Next up he faces a repeat of his English Open final with Gilbert.
“I’m over the moon. To play Ronnie in any tournament is a great feeling and to come out with a win is even better,” said Selby. “At one stage there were four centuries in five frames, which was incredible. After that I didn’t really score as well, but I didn’t miss too many easy pots. I thought my safety was quite good.”
Gilbert And Lisowski Power Through
David Gilbert and Jack Lisowski secured quickfire victories in a stunning evening session.
Gilbert defeated Judd Trump 5-2, with Lisowski beating Thepchaiya Un-Nooh 5-3. Both matches were played simultaneously and completed within an hour and a half, producing a pulsating spectacle at the Emirates Arena.
Lisowski composed the highest break of the event so far, a run of 143, on his way to victory and will now face defending champion Mark Allen for a place in the final.
Tamworth cueman Gilbert is seeking his maiden ranking title, having already appeared in four ranking finals. Despite expressing his desire to get over the line in a ranking event, he was keen not to get too far ahead of himself.
Gilbert said: “It would be the best Christmas present I have ever had if I could finally pull it off. The obsession of doing that isn’t in my head at the moment though. I am just enjoying playing and I haven’t been able to do that in the past couple of months. It is just one game at a time.”
Pistol Still Firing
Mark Allen kept the defence of his title going with a 5-1 defeat of the last remaining Scottish player in the tournament Scott Donaldson.
With the scores locked at 1-1, Allen reeled off four successive frames with breaks of 62, 81, 102 and 78 to emerge with victory.
There was another “VAR” situation in this match, when Ronnie, 4-3 up, played a red very thin, hit it, but the referee didn’t see it and called a “foul and a miss”. Neither player reacted, either because they didn’t see it either or because they weren’t sure and trusted the referee. The commentators though saw the red move, and said so in commentary. This time though, the marker – who likely did hear the commentary – didn’t intervene. When Ronnie played the shot the second time, he played it thicker and stuck it up, leaving a long pot for his opponent who basically went on to win the frame. After Ronnie had played it the first time, the situation on the table was completely different and there was no pot available for Mark. If you follow the link above, you will hear what the pundits in the studio had to say about it, after the match. Where they are definitely right is that Marcel Eckardt intervention in the Allen last 16 match has set a precedent, and that there should be consistency in the way those issues are dealt with.
The defending Champion Mark Allen won his match quite easily but was very critical of Worldsnooker/Eurosport regarding the scheduling of his matches. This is what he had to say about it as reported by the Belfast Telegraph.
Mark Allen blasts ‘disgraceful’ match schedule despite cruising into Scottish Open semi-final
David Gilbert played well to beat Judd Trump, who had not been at his best all week but hadn’t been really tested. And put under pressure we saw some of the old Trump back, playing rather reckless shots at full power. David Gilbert wasn’t intimidated. I wasn’t impressed.
I didn’t see anything of the Jack Lisowski v Thepchaiya Un-nooh so can’t comment.