Higgins European Masters
Ranking, Snooker Headlines

John Higgins Remains in European Masters Hunt

The Scot almost suffered qualifying losses in back-to-back tournaments.

John Higgins dug deep to come from 3-1 behind and beat Chris Wakelin 5-4 in the European Masters qualifiers on Friday in Cannock.

The Wizard of Wishaw looked to be heading for the same fate he suffered at last week’s German Masters preliminaries when he fell behind at the mid-session interval.

But Higgins fought back in trademark fashion and eventually prevailed in a tense deciding frame to advance to the venue stages of this season’s European Masters in Furth.

China’s Yan Bingtao also emerged victoriously from his round-of-128 encounter, scoring two breaks of 94, an 89, and a 51 in overcoming Ben Woollaston 5-2.

Elsewhere, several familiar names from outside the world’s top 16 managed to survive in the event at the Chase Leisure Centre.

Ali Carter won a low-scoring encounter with Martin O’Donnell while last year’s runner-up Martin Gould thrashed Ng On Yee 5-0 with the aid of five half-century breaks.

Joe Perry won the last two frames, including the ninth on the final black, to edge Steven Hallworth, Welsh Open champion Jordan Brown ousted Alexander Ursenbacher, and British Open finalist Gary Wilson defeated amateur top-up Sanderson Lam.

Meanwhile, former German Masters champion Anthony Hamilton won the last four frames to deny Mark King with a 5-3 scoreline.

Chinese duo Cao Yupeng and Zhang Anda, and English pair Liam Highfield and Mitchell Mann, were among the others to progress.

On Saturday, the qualifiers continue with Northern Ireland Open champion Mark Allen, Championship League winner David Gilbert, and seven-time world champion Stephen Hendry entering the fray.

The venue stages for this campaign’s event take place at the Stadthalle Furth towards the end of February next year.

Live coverage of the European Masters qualifiers is available on the Eurosport Player and Matchroom.Live.

Click here to view the draw (Times: CET)

Featured photo credit: WST

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