Sunday 22 September 2019

Mark Williams and Elliot Slessor into Belfast semi-finals

Mark Williams has reached the World Championship final for the first time in 15 years
Mark Williams has reached the World Championship final for the first time in 15 years

Mark Williams will play Elliot Slessor in the Northern Ireland Open semi-finals after beating Mike Dunn 5-1 in Belfast.

Two-time world champion Williams, 42, lost the opening frame before winning five on the bounce to set up a last-four meeting with Ronnie O'Sullivan's conqueror Slessor.

World number 16 Williams, the highest-ranked player in the last eight, compiled breaks of 63, 71 and 53 on his way to a comfortable victory.

Slessor, who produced the shock of the tournament by knocking out O'Sullivan in the third round, booked his place in his first-ever last four by edging through 5-4 against China's Li Yuan.

World number 82 Slessor, 23, from Gateshead, hit back from 2-0 down to lead 4-3 and although Li forced a decider, the Englishman prevailed in a low-scoring encounter.

In the evening session, both quarter-finals went the distance as Lyu Haotian beat Tian Pengfei 5-4 in an all-Chinese affair to set up a semi-final clash with 17-year-old Yan Bingtao, who edged past Robert Milkins by the same score.

Haotian's highest break in a see-saw tactical battle was 64.

PA Media

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