Luka Prisl and Zhao Xintong made it to the final in York in stunning fashion (Photos:.)
Luka Preselle and Zhao Zentong will meet in a delicious final for the UK Championship on Sunday and former champions Steve Davis and Stephen Hendry are looking forward to an unforgettable match.
Neither of them was expected to reach this stage of the championship, but both put in brilliance along the way, especially in the semi-finals on Saturday.
Belgian Presel, 26, was the first to break 130, 105, 112, 102, 97, 80 and 59 in a shock 6-4 win over Keren Wilson.
The 24-year-old Zhao had a lot to accomplish and was almost impressive, defeating Barry Hawkins 6-1 with hits 100, 81 and three-break 78 and 74.
We’ve been talking for a long time about two players with huge potential who seem to have caught both and feel like a change of guard in snooker – or at least it could be, since they both made their Triple Crown debuts. last.
The bookies have quite the final level, but they pressed for a winner of the two, six-time UK champion Davis, tipped towards the man from China.
“I tend to think Xintong might suddenly be the number one Chinese world champion,” Davis told the BBC.
I felt that maybe [Yan] Bingtao seemed pretty decent in this department, but this guy could be very special.
I’m not saying that Luca didn’t get the chance because Luca plays brilliantly, but if he’s going to choose, I don’t know why, but I feel for Xintong.
“I really don’t know why, because Luca performed so well.”
Five-time champion Hendry won’t have to predict, saying he can’t separate the two, but he does think the classics await if they keep playing like they did.
‘I do not know. How do you pick a winner with the way both players played today? Hendry said.
Brecel was among the top 16 in the world, but dropped to 40th place ahead of the UK Championships (photo:.)
Both record. Once in, the frame essentially disappears. If they keep going like this, it’s basically a boxing match, and a big punch. I can not wait.
I hate sitting on the fence, but I honestly can’t pick a winner between the two. I just hope they both play like they did today.
Brecel certainly has the advantage of experience, winning a major qualifying tournament at the 2017 China Championships and winning the two championships last year.
This will be Xintong’s first final, but having also beaten the likes of John Higgins and Jack Lisowski to get to this stage, he’ll love his chances.
The winner will take home £200,000 and win a place in the Masters next month, while the runner-up will miss the event and have to settle for £80,000, so the stakes are high at the Barbican, not just the glory of the first. The Triple Crown title for any one.
The game is played in two sessions at 1:00 PM and Sunday at 7:00 PM with a maximum of 19 frames.
MORE: Ronnie O’Sullivan Produces ‘Shot from the Championship’ Despite UK Championship Loss to Keren Wilson
MORE: Ronnie O’Sullivan claims he’s never seen a more talented pool player than Zhao Xintong
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