Stuart Bingham ended Ronnie O’Sullivan’s bid to be World Champion for a sixth time with a 13-9 victory over the master and now sets up a Semi-Final showdown with tournament favourite Judd Trump.
It was a spirited performance from “Ballrun” at the home of the snooker in what was his comeback game against Ronnie having previously lost out 13-4 to him in his only ever other Q-Final appearance at the Crucible back in 2013.
It has to be said that it was a big frame at the end of the second session that Bingham won to go out of the arena 8-8 going into the evenings preceedings.The alternative of Ronnie being able to have a rest and sit 9-7 in front, and with him such a good front runner,he could well have pulled away from the Basildon potter,but Bingham drew level and went into Wednesday night on equal terms.Ronnie took the opener as they resumed but the it was all Stuart as he took the next five frames in front of a shocked crowd with breaks of 74,88,51,85 & 66.
Bingham was then in tears in his dressing room knowing that just two more wins will see him crowned World Champion and with it take home a cheque for £300,000.
“It’s just unbelievable,” said Bingham, who has won three titles this season including the Shanghai Masters. “I’m so looking forward to tomorrow now. I had to go into my dressing room just now to give myself five minutes. I had a little tear, rang the wife and couldn’t really speak. It’s a brilliant win for me.”
Bingham added: “I didn’t play great in the first two sessions, but when it counted I produced my best. I made a good clearance to make it 8-8 this afternoon, so I come out firing on all cylinders tonight. I knew if I could keep with him then I could give him a game.
“I hope the occasion don’t get on top of me. Hopefully I actually get some sleep tonight then come out tomorrow and just enjoy it.”
O’Sullivan said: “Stuart has been playing some great snooker for the last four or five years. Tonight he was fantastic and there wasn’t a lot I could do. I was just way off the pace and he just pushed me around. I felt the second best player all the way through the match.
“I was outplayed, it was there for everyone to see. I was trying my hardest out there but you can’t start looking for form. I made so many unforced errors and these days you get punished by all the players because they’re really sharp.
“Stuart’s got a chance against Judd. You’d have to make Judd favourite but I don’t think Stuart will be fazed by it. He just loves playing and even if he was 17-0 down he’d still enjoy playing, he’s just that type of guy.”
Bingham now returns to the baize against Trump at 7pm Thursday.
We now go down to one table and it’s best of 33’s for the Semi’s.
ApolloBet have all the matches with enhanced speicals priced up here.