John Higgins and Mark Williams were locked together at 4-4 after the opening session of the Star Group China Open final at the Beijing University Gymnasium today.
Higgins, aiming for his third title of the season, looked set to open a 5-3 advantage but miscued on a break of 32 in the eighth frame – jumping the cue ball over the black.
It gave Williams the chance to compile a run of 66 and make the best-of-17 clash all square.
Williams had earlier cleared from last red to black to win the second frame, before Higgins cleaned up with 66 from 60-0 down to account for the third.
Neither player could get more than a frame ahead as the last final before next month’s 888.com World Championship looked set to go to the wire.
Higgins holds a 15-11 career advantage over Williams and has beaten the Welshman in three of their four finals.
However, his last ranking event victory over Williams was in the 2000 UK Championship.
Williams was looking for his first ranking tournament triumph since the LG Cup in October 2003.