Higgins through to China Open final

Higgins through to China Open final

John Higgins will meet Peter Ebdon in the final of the Bank of Beijing China Open after a thrilling 6-4 semi-final victory over Ryan Day.

Day had taken a 3-1 lead but Higgins took four consecutive frames to go ahead and repelled any hopes of a comeback by his Welsh opponent to close out victory.

Day claimed the first frame after Higgins missed a straightforward red and the 29-year-old rolled in from a difficult position.

The world number eight doubled his lead after building a 35-point advantage with 35 left on the table and then potted a red to go 2-0 up.

A break of 121 in the third frame by Higgins reduced the deficit but Day restored his two-frame lead after taking advantage of potting a red with a regulation safety shot and was halfway to the final at the mid-session interval.

However, Higgins got down to business to take the fifth frame and was quick to pounce on a poor safety shot by Day in the sixth with the Scot going on to make a break of 64.

Day was given a reprieve when Higgins went in off but he missed a snooker leaving the double world champion to pot a red and draw level at 3-3 as Day conceded the frame.

Higgins was on a roll and, despite running out of position, confident potting took him to his third consecutive frame with Day appearing all but beaten.

Higgins quickly rattled through the next to go within one frame of reaching the final.

However, a shellshocked Day hit back in the ninth.

Higgins lined up what seemed like a straightforward red but the ball rattled out of the jaws of the pocket and Day took advantage to double-kiss a black into the far corner and pull back to 5-4.

The 10th frame started off well for Day but he missed a plant and Higgins took advantage to produce a 110 clearance and book a place in tomorrow's final against Ebdon, who thrashed Stuart Pettman 6-1 earlier today.

The world number nine had done little this season to suggest he was coming into form ahead of this month's World Championship but he was utterly dominant.

Ebdon belied his ponderous reputation to open the match with a quickfire century break after Pettman's opening effort stalled at 10.

The second frame was a far cagier affair, with both players failing to impose themselves before Pettman, the world number 62, amassed 35.

However, Ebdon responded with 57 to leave his opponent requiring snookers, and he was able to hang on under pressure and double his advantage.

Pettman hit back in frame three when, after a series of scrappy exchanges, the 2002 world champion - requiring a snooker - went in off and conceded.

Ebdon, who is now based in Dubai, raced away with the fourth frame and then extended his lead to 4-1 when Pettman left a crucial red in the jaws of the pocket when well placed to clear up.

The sixth could have gone either way and featured a sensational shot from Ebdon, who came off all four pockets to nudge a red after he was comprehensively snookered.

Eventually, Pettman was left needing only a handful of colours to win before stalling on brown, allowing his opponent to steal in and move within a whisker of victory.

And the match was sealed when Ebdon, well ahead in the seventh, left Pettman snookered behind the black - prompting the concession.

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