Ali Carter won Group 4 of the Championship League on Thursday with a 3-1 victory over Shaun Murphy in Coventry.
The “Captain” only just squeezed into the semi-finals after finishing in fourth place after the league phase, edging Liang Wenbo into fifth place on frame difference only.
In the last four, Carter overcame three-time Championship League winner Judd Trump 3-0 before recording breaks of 116, 56, and 92 in denying Murphy in the final.
The triumph ensures that the 38 year-old will be one of the seven competitors who will feature in March’s Winners’ Group – joining Zhou Yuelong, Mark Selby, and Kyren Wilson who have already booked their spots at the Ricoh Arena.
Liang’s 140 total clearance against Barry Hawkins, who lost in a decider to Murphy in the last four, stood as the highest break of the event, earning the Chinese a £500 bonus.
Murphy, Trump, Hawkins, and Liang will gain another shot at qualification for the Winners’ Group in Group 5 but Tom Ford and Mark Allen have been eliminated.