Neil Robertson emerged from Group 6 of the Championship League on Friday at the Morningside Arena in Leicester.
The Australian compiled breaks of 67, 107, and 62 to see off Zhou Yuelong 3-1 in the final and book his spot in the Winners’ Group.
Robertson looked in trouble on day one when he lost his opening three fixtures in the round-robin phase.
But the Melbourne man bounced back with 3-2 defeats of Joe Perry and Xiao Guodong, followed by a 3-1 triumph against Matthew Selt, to sneak through to the knockout rounds in fourth place.
Selt, who had dominated the league up until that point with five wins on the trot, then ran into Robertson again in the last four, losing 3-2.
The Englishman, who entered the competition in Group 1, has reached the knockout rounds in all but one of the six groups but has so far failed to advance any further.
Selt will have one more chance to qualify for the Winners’ Group when Group 7 takes place later in February.
Zhou, Xiao, and Robert Milkins also survive for one more opportunity and will be joined by three newcomers including Ronnie O’Sullivan.
Robertson, meanwhile, is guaranteed a shot at this year’s Championship League title and will feature in the Winners’ Group in March alongside Jack Lisowski, Stuart Bingham, Kyren Wilson, Judd Trump, and defending champion John Higgins.
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There are two different versions of the Championship League currently on the snooker calendar.
The ranking event edition was staged back in the summer, with Luca Brecel triumphing on that occasion.
This ongoing Championship League, which is open only to invited players, is the original having first taken place 15 years ago.
In addition to prize money on offer for advancing in the respective groups, other cash bonuses are available for frames won and by compiling the highest break.
Live coverage of the ongoing event is available on the Championship League Snooker Facebook page.
Featured photo credit: WST