And then there were four.
We now the Betfred World champion 2012 will be Stephen Maguire,Ali Carter,Ronnie O Sullivan or Matthew Stevens.following todays conclusion of the quarter finals.
The question coming into this afternoons session of the O Sullivan v Robertson match was would Ronnie live to regret his carelessness in missing frame ball blue to level at 4-4 yesterday.Any thoughts that this may have affected him however were quickly put to bed as he produced at times breathetaking snooker to turn his overnight 5-3 deficit into a 7-5 lead at the interval.Robertson was struggling under the pressure been applied by "The Rocket" and the score soon became 9-5.Robertson to his credit dug in and managed to win the last two of the session to trail 9-7 coming into the final session.
Robertson knew he needed a good start this evening to have any chance of keeping his title dreams alive and they shared to opening two frames making it 10-8.O Sullivan has looked a different animal here this week though and I'm not just talking about the haircut.He has seemed totally focused on what he is doing and is cuing as well as he has in many years.He again upped a gear to make it 12-8 and although Robertson closed again to 12-10 Ronnie closed out the match in the next 13-10 to strengthen his position at the top of the betting market for a fourth World crown.
The man standing between Ronnie and a fourth appearance in a world final is Matthew Stevens who completed a straight forward victory over fellow Welshman Ryan Day 13-5 this morning.Stevens has not had the best of seasons but has always throughout his career looked more comfortable in the longer matches and the two time world runner up certainly wont fear playing O Sullivan over four sessions.The story of this match however was that Stevens won an astonishing eleven frames in a row to turn a 5-2 deficit into a 13-5 win.It was only after the match that we discovered that the unfortunate Day was suffering from a migraine yesterday afternoon and that surely accounts for his sudden loss of form.
In the top half Stephen Maugure will surely have enjoyed his day off and will no doubt have hoped for a close long draining match between his potential opponents Ali Carter and Jamie Jones.Jones has been the revelation. of the tournament in many respects coming here as a debutant but lighting the place up with some exciting snooker.Ali on the other hand showed all his experience in beating Trump in the last round. This game always had the potential to be a close one and so it proved.
Following the first session Carter lead 5-3 and moved that onto 9-7 coming into tonights final session.Carter started the better and built his lead to 12-8 and one frame away from victory. Jones was not going to lie down though and clawed his way back to 12-9 and then 12-10.Carter must have surely have been starting to think was the same thing going to happen here as had happened in reverse in his last match with Judd.Those worries would only have intensified as Jones closed within one at 12-11.Carter was not to be denied though and steadied himself to see out the match 13-11.
So there we have it.It seems like an appropriate time to point out that following a disaster in the second round I managed to predict all quarter final matches correctly.if only I'd done an accumulator! Who do I see in the final? I think we may be in for a repeat of The German Masters final of a couple of months ago with Maguire facing O Sullivan.If that is the case an they both produce the snooker they did then we really would be in for a special weekend.