Neil Robertson to face Barry Hawkins in Masters final after epic semi-finals | Snooker

Neil Robertson delivered a outstanding fightback in opposition to Mark Williams and can meet Barry Hawkins in the final of the Masters after two epic semi-finals.

The 39-year-old Robertson trailed 3-1 after which 5-3 earlier than taking the best-of-11 encounter at Alexandra Palace to a finale with an excellent break of 119 in the tenth body.

Hawkins, 42, led Judd Trump 4-2 earlier than being compelled right into a decider and after his quarter-final victory over Mark Selby, has now crushed the world No 1 and No 2 to attain his second Masters final.

Robertson required two snookers in a nail-biting decider, the second of which he duly acquired when Williams, who was 29 clear with 27 remaining, hit the inexperienced as he tried to swerve for the yellow.


The final body was an interesting tactical battle with, at one level, the black and the final pink collectively on the sting of a nook pocket, with each gamers making an attempt not to knock the black in.

The Welshman, 46, who was aiming to attain the final 19 years after he lifted his second Masters crown, confirmed he can nonetheless compete on the highest stage. However Robertson, who has gained the Masters title solely as soon as – beating Shaun Murphy a decade in the past – held his nerve to cross the end line and declare a 6-5 victory.

Preventing again tears, the world No 4 stated: “By no means hand over, by no means ever hand over. It doesn’t matter the way it appears.

“To have a match that finishes like that, you’ll most likely by no means see that ever once more in the game. It was completely unbelievable and it’s going to take some hours for that to sink in. It has to be the most effective comebacks of my profession.

Barry Hawkins after winning his semi-final against Judd Trump
Barry Hawkins was misplaced for phrases after successful his semi-final in opposition to Judd Trump, to put him into the final of the Masters the place he’ll face Neil Robertson. {Photograph}: James Manning/PA

“The strain was so excessive and I performed a extremely good snooker on the yellow. The inexperienced was the most effective strain balls I’ve ever knocked in in my profession. And I managed to maintain myself collectively on the finish.”

Robertson added: “I virtually really feel as if I’ve received nothing to lose as a result of I used to be out of the match, so it would make me a little bit of harmful man tomorrow.”

Hawkins additionally gained his semi-final in opposition to Trump in the deciding body after a back-and-forth encounter. Trump trailed 4-2 earlier than rallying to take a 5-4 lead, just for Hawkins to win back-to-back frames to ebook his place in the final.

“I used to be so nervous, I can’t imagine it,” stated Hawkins, who additionally beat Trump in the 2016 Masters semi-final earlier than ultimately shedding to Ronnie O’Sullivan. “Greatest ambiance I’ve ever performed in. I’m delighted, I’m buzzing.”

Trump, in the meantime, stated: “I had possibilities, he nicked all of the scrappy ones and potted some nice balls. I gave it my all after the interval, nevertheless it simply wasn’t to be.”

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