Champion of Champions final
Main News, Non-Ranking

Champion of Champions Final: Neil Robertson vs Mark Allen

The showdown is a repeat of the 2015 final when the Australian emerged with the trophy.

Neil Robertson and Mark Allen will clash in the Champion of Champions final at the Marshall Arena in Milton Keynes on Sunday.

Defending champion Robertson had already made it through to the final following Friday’s 6-5 victory against Mark Selby, and Allen joined him on Saturday evening with a straightforward 6-1 defeat of Judd Trump.

Allen and Trump had been expected to produce fireworks, but their battle never managed to fully spark into life.

The world number one couldn’t produce his best form and Allen capitalised with breaks of 102, 67, 66, and 65 to comfortably advance.

Allen last featured in a Champion of Champions final five years ago, when he lost 10-5 to Robertson at the Ricoh Arena in Coventry.

Indeed, this will be the latter’s third final overall in the prestigious tournament as he bids to match Ronnie O’Sullivan’s record haul of three titles.

Both the reigning champion and Allen have lost their most recent appearances in finals, with Robertson missing out on glory in the recent English Open and the Northern Irishman suffering a reverse to Stephen Maguire at the Tour Championship towards the end of last season.

In general, though, Robertson has been the far more prolific winner of late, accumulating five trophies since Allen last etched his name onto silverware at the 2018 Scottish Open.

The duo’s head-to-head record also reads in favour of Robertson, who has triumphed 11 times from the 18 previous encounters with one another.

However, Allen has recorded a victory over the Melbourne man in a major final, when he scored a 10-5 win in the International Championship title decider just over two years ago.

The world number eight might feel slightly fortuitous being involved in this year’s Champion of Champions having not actually won a tournament in the last twelve months – instead gaining an invite as a highly-ranked top-up.

But the former Masters winner has already proven his worth with standout victories over both the world champion and the world number one.

Robertson, though, will undoubtedly be the favourite, especially given his pedigree on the main stage in recent times.

The 38 year-old’s scoring is so impressive that it can be almost impossible to live with, something Selby can attest to despite producing one of his best displays of the campaign in the last four.

If Allen can compete in the scoring department, as he is fully capable of doing when in full flow, then it could be another compelling affair.

The Champion of Champions is one of the most sought-after prizes on the calendar, with £150,000 on offer for the winner in the final, and it promises to be an exciting conclusion over the best-of-19 frames.

Live coverage of the Champion of Champions continues on ITV4 and various international broadcasters.

Click here to view the draw – Scheduled times in CET. (External Site)

Featured photo credit: @ChampOfChamps

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