Tour Championship semi-final
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Preview: Tour Championship Semi-Final

With one victory already recorded, the quartet is each one step closer to claiming the top prize on Friday.

The first Tour Championship semi-final encounter will take place between Judd Trump and Stephen Maguire on Wednesday in Milton Keynes.

Mark Selby and Mark Allen will subsequently battle it out over the best of 17 frames in the second last four clash on Thursday.

A grandstand finale has been set up after the remaining four contenders triumphed in their opening contests at the Marshall Arena this week.



Pre-tournament favourite Trump, the runaway world number one, arguably had the most routine outing as he outplayed John Higgins in securing a 9-4 success.

The reigning world champion meets an in-form opponent in Maguire, who managed to live up to his nickname of “On Fire”.

The Scot produced a stunning display, ousting Neil Robertson 9-5 with the aid of a record six century breaks.

Maguire will likely have to score heavily again if he’s to mount a serious challenge against Trump.

Recent history would suggest that the 39 year-old has his work cut out, having lost in each of their last four clashes.

In an entertaining semi-final affair at the Players Championship in February, the event that preceded this competition in the Coral Series, Maguire squandered a two-frame advantage to lose in a decider.

Indeed, Trump boasts a far superior head-to-head advantage overall and will be the one highly fancied to advance.

Bidding for a seventh ranking title of this season, a victory over Maguire would also guarantee Trump the £100,000 bonus on offer for topping the Coral Cup mini-rankings list.

Six red world champion Maguire certainly has the pedigree to upset the odds, but he doesn’t possess the level of consistency that is required to back up one decisive victory against an elite player with another.

Meanwhile, the second Tour Championship semi-final will be between a pair of Marks after Selby beat Yan Bingtao and Allen edged Shaun Murphy.

The latter recorded an incredible six tons of his own to match Maguire’s record in a best of 17 frames tie, but Murphy still fell short in a 9-8 defeat to the Northern Irishman.

Allen has now reached seven semi-finals this season in all tournaments, but he has failed to go beyond that hurdle on each occasion so far.

Matches between Allen and Selby tend to be close, with eight out of their prior eleven duels lasting the distance.

Allen has won six times to Selby’s five, and while Selby has the greater pedigree for the big stage overall, there doesn’t seem to be much separating them in terms of their rivalry on the table.

The “Jester” has two pieces of silverware from this term already, but they were so long ago that it’s difficult to find any relevance for that in this situation.

Either way, both Tour Championship semi-final encounters promise to provide intriguing viewing with the tasty £150,000 champion’s cheque coming within reach.

Live coverage in the UK and Ireland is on ITV4, while there are various other methods of tuning in around the world.

Click here to view the draw (Times: CET)

Featured photo credit: WST



Creator of SnookerHQ and a journalism graduate, David has been actively reporting on snooker since 2011. He has been published in national publications and has appeared on BBC World News and on talkSPORT radio as an analyst.

2 Comments

  1. Can someone throw light on whether snooker clubs can reopen on 4th july,are we classed as an indoor sports facility,if so we must remain closed, but pubs can open… Don’t know,

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World Rankings Top 16

World Rankings after the Tour Championship – won by Neil Robertson.

1. Judd Trump
2. Ronnie O’Sullivan
3. Neil Robertson
4. Mark Selby
5. John Higgins
6. Kyren Wilson
7. Shaun Murphy
8. Stephen Maguire
9. Ding Junhui
10. Yan Bingtao
11. Barry Hawkins
12. Mark Williams
13. Mark Allen
14. Jack Lisowski
15. David Gilbert
16. Anthony McGill

Fin Ruane Snooker Academy