Kyren Wilson will take on Stuart Bingham in the quarter-finals of the Betway UK Championship tonight (Friday).
The Kettering snooker star reached the last eight of one of the sport’s ‘Triple Crown’ events for the first time after he claimed a superb 6-2 victory over world number six Barry Hawkins in York last night (Thursday).
Wilson has enjoyed the best calendar year of his career so far in 2018 having finished at runner-up at the Masters while also appearing in the World Championship semi-finals and winning the Paul Hunter Classic and the Six Red World Championship.
And the current world number 11 has continued that form in York this week, dropping just six frames in four matches in the tournament so far.
Hawkins established the early advantage after making a contribution of 87 to take the opener. But breaks of 69 and 49 helped Wilson into a 2-1 lead, before a century run of 102 from Hawkins saw him restore parity at the mid-session.
When they returned Wilson stormed to victory with a clean sweep of frames with breaks of 95, 78, 81 and 61.
That has set up a clash with world number 14 Bingham this evening.
And Wilson said: “It was nip and tuck up until the interval and It looked like it was going to be really close. Once play got back underway I just thought I needed to stay positive.
“If I got into a bit of a tactical safety battle he might have outplayed me. He gave me a chance in the fifth frame and I felt like from there I really had to punish him. After that I had the momentum.
“It will be a clash of the top 16 against Stuart in the quarter-finals. Nowadays that isn’t always the case at this point in an event, as the standard is so strong and people you wouldn’t expect to get this far are creeping into the latter stages.
“Stuart is a very good player and I always enjoy matches with him. He attacks, goes for his shots and scores quite quickly. It is always an enjoyable match and I will look forward to it."