Hong Kong Masters semi-finals
Main News, Non-Ranking

Hong Kong Masters: semi-finals draw, preview, schedule

Ronnie O’Sullivan and Neil Robertson completed the Hong Kong Masters semi-finals lineup after victories on Friday.

The Rocket thrashed home favourite Ng On Yee with a comprehensive whitewash display in which the world champion compiled a ton and four more breaks above 50.

Earlier on day two of the non-ranking event, Robertson edged late replacement Mark Williams 5-3 with the aid of two century breaks.

O’Sullivan and Robertson join Marco Fu and John Higgins in the Hong Kong Masters semi-finals that will be played on Saturday at the Coliseum.

Marco Fu vs John Higgins

Saturday, 6:30am BST

The last time Fu and Higgins faced off against one another, it was in the final of the Scottish Open all the way back in 2016.

On that day, Higgins started the contest in blistering fashion with a hat-trick of century breaks only for Fu to win nine out of the remaining ten frames to seal a remarkable third ranking triumph.

Since then and for various reasons, Fu has been absent from the top of the sport, but the 44 year-old produced his best display in years on Thursday when he ousted Mark Selby.

Higgins got a monkey off his back too, snapping a ten-game losing streak to Judd Trump in a 5-4 defeat of the world number two.

Fu actually boasts an 11-9 overall head-to-head advantage from prior meetings with the Scot, including successes in their last three matches.

Those encounters were a long time ago, but Fu will be hoping to benefit from what will likely be a partisan home crowd.

Even so, Higgins will of course be the favourite to reach the title-deciding showdown where the finalists will be competing for a £100,000 top prize.

Ronnie O’Sullivan vs Neil Robertson

Saturday, 12pm BST

The second of the Hong Kong Masters semi-finals represents a repeat of the final the last time the tournament was staged in 2017.

On that occasion, Robertson beat O’Sullivan 6-3 to capture the invitation trophy at the Queen Elizabeth Stadium.

And while the latter boasts a superior head-to-head record overall, Robertson has enjoyed the upper hand of late.

Since the 2019 Champion of Champions, O’Sullivan has only won once from six clashes with the Australian.

It’s hard to read too much into the seven-time world champion’s performance against Ng – a match he was always likely to dominate.

But O’Sullivan does thrive in these kinds of conditions – with a small elite field, a big prize fund, and an enormous crowd to entertain.

Neither player will want to miss Sunday’s final where a crowd in the region of 9,000 is expected to attend, a figure that will absolutely smash the previous record for a snooker match.

Live coverage across Europe will be available on Eurosport with other options (click here) available for viewers around the world.

Featured photo credit: WST

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