The Last Four

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Four days down and just four players now remain at this week’s Indian Open in Visakhapatnam which is now with both the semi-finals and final to be played on Saturday.

With its relatively short format and a few of the sport’s big hitters absent this week, there was always a feeling that we could see a few shock results this week and so it has proved with four of today’s quarter-finalists having reached the last eight for the first time in their careers.

Despite the new faces though, there has been no shortage of quality on display and we are now set for a fascinating climax to the event over the coming hours.

Among those to have made it through to the final day are the top two seeds Anthony McGill and John Higgins, who remain on a collision course for what would be an all-Scottish final.

Defending champion McGill is looking to seal his third ranking event title in little over a year with victory tomorrow and has so far progressed serenely through the draw, dropping just frames in his five matches played this week. Next up for the Glaswegian will be a clash with reigning Northern Ireland Open champion Mark King, who notably came back from 2-0 and 3-2 down to edge out Stuart Bingham at the last 16 stage, before then defeating first-time quarter-finalist Elliot Slessor later in the day.

The meeting between McGill and King will be their second in as many days following McGill’s 6-5 victory at last week’s Six Red World Championship, while few will forget their memorable match at the 2015 World Championship qualifiers, also won by the Scot in a deciding frame.

In the opposite half of the draw meanwhile four-time world champion John Higgins faces Xu Si, the 19-year-old tour rookie through to his first semi-final following victories against Robin Hull, Sean O’Sullivan, Ricky Walden and David Gilbert this week.

For Higgins it will be his second test against young Chinese opposition of the week after his narrow first-round win against Zhao Xintong. Since then, further wins against Martin O’Donnell, Michael Holt and Liam Highfield have seen him into the last four and just two matches away from what would be his 29th ranking title.

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