Luca Brecel delighted his home supporters by fighting back from 3-0 down to beat Alan McManus 4-3 in the last 32 of the European Masters on Wednesday.
But two-time defending champion Judd Trump crashed out of the competition in Lommel after a shock 4-2 defeat to Tian Pengfei.
Trump had looked impressive in his first couple of rounds this week but once again his battle with inconsistency resurfaced as his trademark scoring deserted him.
Tian compiled breaks of 112 and 68 to move into the last 16, setting up an-all Chinese clash with Liang Wenbo after the latter edged Fergal O’Brien by the same scoreline.
Brecel, meanwhile, was last player to advance on day three after launching a superb comeback against one of the toughest match competitors in the game.
McManus appeared set to silence the young Belgian’s followers when he opened the contest with breaks of 79 and 66 before taking the third as well to go to within the brink of victory.
Yet, Brecel dug deep and drew inspiration from his support to knock in runs of 57, 63, and 71 – in doing so, the 23 year-old sets up a meeting with former German Masters champion Anthony Hamilton.
Brecel and Hamilton, who constructed an excellent 129 century in beating Thor Chuan Leong, are on opposite ends of their careers but will each be looking at the top half of the draw and thinking that there could be an opportunity to challenge for silverware this weekend.
Kyren Wilson is the top seed remaining in that segment after the Paul Hunter Classic champion ousted fellow Englishman Allan Taylor 4-2.
Also a winner in the Six Red World Championship this season, Wilson will maintain his bid for a third title in as many months when he meets veteran Joe Perry for a quarter-final berth.
The ever-improving Jack Lisowski is in the hunt from this bracket as well and the Riga Masters runner-up’s victory over Peter Lines may not have been impressive in terms of his usual scoring prowess, but it at least demonstrated his ability to get through while playing below par.
Lisowski will meet Zhang Anda after the Chinese 26 year-old beat Eden Sharav 4-2, a popular scoreline from the third day at De Soeverein.
In the bottom half of the draw, world number one Mark Selby and Ryan Day will face each other after emerging from tough encounters with Mark Davis and Elliot Slessor respectively.
Selby must be running on fumes after his gruelling 10-9 victory over John Higgins in the China Championship final on Sunday, quickly followed by a long flight back from Guangzhou to Europe, but the 35 year-old still seems prepared to scrap for any win.
Elsewhere, Mark Allen prolonged his bid for a first ranking trophy in more than two years as he defeated Jak Jones while Anthony McGill pipped Ali Carter in a decider.
Allen and McGill next entertain Ross Muir and Jimmy Robertson respectively, the latter having won a 4-3 thriller on the black for the second successive match thanks to his nail-biting triumph over Zhou Yuelong.
Finally, former ranking event champions Ricky Walden and Mark King will do battle after successes over Craig Steadman and 2017 runner-up Stuart Bingham.