Kettering's Kyren Wilson edges out Ronnie O'Sullivan to seal a semi-final spot

The Kettering star is hoping to win his first-ever Triple Crown title in York

Friday, 3rd December 2021, 5:40 pm
Updated Friday, 3rd December 2021, 5:42 pm
Kettering's Kyren Wilson defeated Ronnie O'Sullivan to book a place in the semi-finals of the UK Championship

Kettering’s Kyren Wilson has moved a step closer to a first-ever Triple Crown title after he edged out the legendary Ronnie O’Sullivan 6-5 in the quarter-finals of the Cazoo UK Championship.

A thrilling clash saw world no.5 Wilson open up with breaks of 92 and 117 to take a 2-0 lead before the ‘Rocket’ hit back to level at the mid-session interval with a century break of 115.

The next two frames were shared but Wilson then moved into a 5-3 lead to go within one of victory.

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However, O’Sullivan struck back with breaks of 64 and 83 to force a decider and when he missed a brown in that final frame, the ‘Warrior’ seized on the opportunity to knock in a brilliant, match-winning break of 102.

It’s the first time the Kettering star has been beyond the last eight in the UK Championship and he is now the highest ranked player left in the tournament.

Wilson will now play Belgian Luca Brecel in the semi-finals in York tomorrow (Saturday) afternoon and he was understandably delighted to hold his nerve to gain a measure of revenge on O’Sullivan who beat him in his first-ever World Championship final last year.

“It would mean everything to me to win the title,” Wilson told Eurosport immediately after his win.

“The only thing that’s missing from my CV at the moment are the big titles.

“As long as I leave everything out there and try to compete to the highest level, that’s all I can ask for.

“If I win, I win. If I don’t, so be it. I have plenty of time on my side to come back.

“I know the situation now. I have gone from the hunter to being the hunted maybe. So I have to take that on the chin, try to deal with that and, to be honest, just try to enjoy it at the same time.

“I want these titles, I want my name in the accolades for when I retire. You need to be able to handle these pressure moments to make that happen.

“When you can take it out in one visit, you come off feeling proud that you have stood up to the utmost pressure. I am delighted with the performance.

“I have tinkered a lot, I have changed cues and this, that and the other and I have found something this week that has settled my mind and that’s key when you are out there. When you’re under pressure, you need to be settled.

“It all comes from hours and hours of hard work and sacrifice. Me and my brother (Taylor) have been working really hard behind the scenes, trying to find my timing, trying to find that sweet spot for when I need it under the utmost pressure.

“It showed in the decider. I had it all go against me at 5-3 and Ronnie heaped on the pressure but I managed to handle that.”