Snooker World Championship, the business end

The World Snooker Championship is getting to the business end of the tournament. At the time of writing, the semi-finals are taking place, where at least three of the four players have exceeded expectations to get this far, with the greatest respect.

Looking back over the two weeks, snooker’s grand showpiece has not disappointed. There was a 147 break, which was made by Kyren Wilson, who was blown away by John Higgins in the round of 16.

Former four-time world champion Mark Selby, after a slow start in his semi-final against Mark Allen, has managed to draw level at 6-6. The Northern Irishmen who has had some issues off the table to contend, has had a superb season.

The left-handed Allen, who credits his weight loss for one of the reasons, has performed admirably to get this far in what is his second time at the semi-final stage.

Masters winner Mark Allen will know himself in Mark Selby, he’s up against one of the best players in the modern game. The Jester from Leicester who too had some issues to deal with off the table, has returned something close to the Selby of old.

Fittingly then, this semi-final is so evenly poised. In the other semi-final, it’s the clash of the two novices. Si Jiahui will take exception to that no doubt. Chinese qualifier Si defeated former world champion Sean Murphy en route to his semi-final with Luca Brecel.

Belgian Brecel, who is seen as one of the most attacking players on the circuit, at the time of writing was 11-5 down to this year’s surprise package Si Jiahui.

At just 20, the Chinese player has been this year’s surprise package. He lead 5-3 overnight. Si qualifier took control with breaks of 52, 89, 58 and a wonderful 122 as he won four of the first five frames. A stunned Brecel made just one half-century break as he struggled.

Si, 20, left the auditorium to a standing ovation as he rounded off the session with runs of 55 and 71. In a semi-final where it’s first to 17, Sean Murphy’s conqueror is in a good position to get into a maiden world final.

As for Brecel, he arguably seemed a bit jaded, having beat defending champion and seven-time World Champion Ronnie O’Sullivan the night before.

A petulant swipe at one of the object balls summed the UK Championship finalists mood, but to win the 28-year-old will need the perfect temperament. Although it’s a big lead that Si Jiahui has, it’s insurmountable.
It’s sometimes down to the run of the balls.

We will keep you up to date with how the tournament ends.

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