2023 Six-reds World Championship – The finalists are Ding Junhui and Thepchaiya Un-Nooh

The Final of the 2023 6-reds World Snooker Championship will be contested between two Asian players: Ding Junhui and Thepchaiya Un-Nooh. Both have won the title before: Theppy in 2015, Ding in 2016. Both have been runner-up: Theppy in 2017, Ding in 2018.

It’s clear that this format suits certain players more than others as it asks for a different tactical approach. It is played a lot in Asia, not so much in Europe. That said some European players seem to be very at ease with it: Mark Davis won the 6-reds World Championship three times, Ricky Walden has been in three finals, winning the event once, Stephen Maguire has won it twice.

You will find all the results on snooker.org

Here is WST report on Thepchaiya Un-Nooh 7-6 win over Hossein Vafaei in the first semi-final

Home Hero Un-Nooh Wins Thriller

Thailand’s Thepchaiya Un-Nooh is through to the final of his home event, the Six Red World Championship, after beating Hossein Vafaei 7-6 in a pulsating semi-final showdown in Pathum Thani.

World number 45 Un-Nooh is the only Thai ever to have won the tournament, having become Six Red World Champion back in 2015 after beating Liang Wenbo 8-2 in the final. He was also runner-up to Mark Williams in 2017.

The former Shoot Out winner now takes on either Ding Junhui or Tom Ford in tomorrow’s showpiece, where there will be a top prize of over £100,000 on the line, as well as a stunning trophy granted to the event by the King of Thailand.

Iran’s Vafaei will be disappointed to fall just short of the final, but can take confidence from a great run this week, which included beating John Higgins and a thrilling 6-5 quarter-final defeat of Judd Trump.

It was Vafaei who made the early running in this match. He surged into a 5-2 lead, but there was a crucial turning point in the eighth frame.

Vafaei looked to be in a strong position among the balls, but narrowly missed a red to the top left on 20 and left it over the pocket. Un-Nooh cleared with 50 to claw back within two. He then won the next on the pink, after Vafaei squandered a straight blue to the top right, making it 5-4.

The next went the way of 28-year-old Vafaei to leave him just one from the win. However, a gutsy break of 59 from Un-Nooh kept the game alive. Both players missed chances on the colours in a dramatic 12th, before Un-Nooh deposited a tricky black to left middle. He dominated the decider to send his home fans into raptures and emerge a 7-6 victor.

I am so relieved. When I was 6-4 down I was not feeling good. I just looked at my family to give me some power. He missed in the last frame and I got the first chance. It is a good game to win,” said 37-year-old Un-Nooh.

I’m very glad to play among them (Thai fans), including my family. This is a very rare chance to get into the final of a big event in Thailand. I will do my best in the final now.

The fans helped me a lot. They were with me on every shot and that gave me energy to pot the balls. Hopefully tomorrow there will be even more of them.

It will be a huge moment tomorrow. It has been eight years since I won the trophy in this event. I’ve been waiting for a very long time to win the Six Red again. It would be great if I can lift the trophy.”

And this is WST report on Ding’s 7-4 victory over Tom Ford

Ding Battles Past Ford

Ding Junhui is through to the Six Red World Championship final for a third time, after defeating Tom Ford 7-4 in Pathum Thani.

This evening’s victory for Chinese superstar Ding sets up a blockbuster all-Asian final against Thailand’s Thepchaiya Un-Nooh. They will do battle over the best of 15 frames, with a top prize of just over £100,000 and a trophy given to the event by the King of Thailand up for grabs.

Ding’s first Six Red world final came back in 2016, when he prevailed in an epic contest with Stuart Bingham 8-7 to become champion. He also faced Kyren Wilson in the 2018 title match, but lost out 8-4.

Ford held off a steely fightback from John Higgins yesterday evening, to prevail 6-5 and make the semis. He had led 5-0, but was pegged back to a deciding frame before emerging a 6-5 victor.

This time Ford assumed the role of pursuer, when Ding charged out to a 4-1 lead, crafting a run of 63 along the way. Ford took the sixth on the black and then won the seventh to pull within a frame at 4-3. The Leicester cueman fired in a superb break of 74 in the eighth to restore parity at 4-4.

However, from there it was Ding who recovered his composure and surged for the line. The 14-time ranking event winner racked up three frames on the bounce, including breaks of 70 and 64, to seal his place in the final.

Ding said: “It is all Asia, between China and Thailand. It is going to be very fun. It is a home game for him. I know he has won the event before so it is very exciting for tomorrow.

I played alright, but made some bad decisions at 4-1 up and he came back to 4-4. Six reds is a very quick game and you only need five reds and colours to win. That makes it difficult and makes the safety shots important.

Winning always gives you very good memories to keep going for the next tournaments. Winning matches is about consistency, so this event should help.

I saw nothing of the first match, but I did watch the last five frames of the Ding vs Ford semi-final. It was indeed about making the right decisions. This format leads to a lot very tactical frames, but they don’t drag for hours. When one of the players has won the main tactical battle and gets in, they finish the job more often than not. I like that. I also like the modified miss rule. The snookered player gets five attempts, after that their opponent has ball in hand. I had never that happen before today, but in this match Ford did miss five times…