Wuxi Classic 2011 - the semi-finals

20:43:00 Ramona Dragomir 0 Comments

Captain Carter landed saftely in the final
Yes, we reached that part of every competition when only four players remain and while two will most definitely qualify for the final, the other two will have to go back home. Or fly to Thailand, in this case :-))
The dream has became a reality for Ali Carter, the Captain managing to win 6-3 over the defending champion Shaun Murphy, but also for Mark Selby who denied the victory of the local star Ding Junhui with a 6-5 scoreline.

It was early morning and I think the lads weren't very happy with that. Hell, I wasn't happy with that! :-)) So, the start of the Carter v. Murphy match was kind of slow. However, this didn't stop the Captain Ali from winning the first three frames of his snooker encounter with the Magician, by hitting a top break of 58.
Murphy didn't seem as sharp as he did yesterday and the day before that and his poor safety shots were the main problem and the case to his loss. Still, just before the mid-interval he managed to win his first frame of the match with a break of 55.

Mark Selby booked himself to fly with Carter
After the tea time break, Carter extended his lead at 4-1, but Shaun fought back with a marvellous 93 to reduce the gap. A few minutes after that and Ali was carefully collecting 101 consecutive points in order to put himself just one frame away from the final.
But the final had to wait a bit longer as Murphy was trying his best to make up for the three frames deficit. And that was the moment when Carter could have thrown everything away for he started to miss important pots and that gave his opponent the chance to make the scoreline 5-2.
The next frame didn't see Carter excel also, but by fortune he succeeded to win it and end Murphy's run at 6-3.

The second semi-final was a more balanced one and it definitely had fireworks all the way through. Ding was getting all the home support he needed, while Selby was in a pretty good form. No wonder they ended up on a decider.
The mid session interval found the boys all square at two a piece, whit a break of 75 from Ding and one of 81 from Selby, but after the relaxation time was over, the Jester took control of the match with runs of 134 and 64 to go 5-2 up against the Chinese Sensation.

The Chinese Sensation, Ding Junhui lost
We all know Ding. He never gives up and this time wasn't any different. That's why he started winning one frame at a time with a bit of help from breaks like 71 and 38. It was 5-4 in favour of Mark, when Ding (in need of a snooker) completed the task in the best possible way as the scoreline was 68-68. The black was respotted and so Ding took the frame that was guaranteeing him to play one more.
The decider saw a very determined Selby, breaks of 63 and 25 doing the trick and throwing him in the final, where he'll meet with his World Cup companion, Ali Carter. The irony! :-)

So, tomorrow boys and girls is the big final, the schedule looking like this:

From 06:00 Ali Carter v. Mark Selby (1st session)
From 12:30 Ali Carter v. Mark Selby (last session)
*all hours are UK time

TV coverage:
06:30 - 09:30 British EuroSport
23:00 British EuroSport
*please note that EuroSport won't cover the second session LIVE so if you want to see the lads, please visit this website (www.fromsportcom.com) and choose from the list the snooker tournament. (hint: it has China's flag ... the red one with the little stars!) :-P

The boys will play under the "best of 17 frames" rule. Personally, I think that both of them have pretty good chances to win this. Carter seems to be quite in a good form, while Selby has a very good recent history regarding China's tournaments (aka. the final of the 2011 China Open). However, both of them have experienced problems with being constant in their playing and that's something that needs to be improved in order to win the match and make a remarkable and memorable victory.
Best of luck to both players and may the best man win! :-)