The “Captain” has qualified for the final stages of the invitational tournament for the first time since 2018.
The Kettering cueist is the tournament’s defending champion.
The Englishman is bidding for a record-extending fourth title in the competition.
There is one more counting event before the final places are determined.
The Welshman had been in the doldrums for a couple of years after a dismal run of form.
There is a £50,000 cheque on offer for the champion at the Marshall Arena.
There are 64 players still hoping to beat the clock and collect the £50,000 top prize.
The Northern Irishman previously reached the final of the competition in 2013.
The quick-paced ranking event returns for another edition on the calendar.