MARK Allen is just one more win away from defending his Haikou World Open crown after a superb semi-final win over John Higgins.
Allen, who won his first world ranking title in this event last year, will play Matthew Stevens in Sunday’s final after being in superb touch against the four-times world champion, recording a fully deserved 6-2 win.
The Ulsterman’s victory was so impressive today that Higgins could not even register a single point in the last four frames of the match.
However it was the Scot who made the better start as a break of 90 gave him the opening frame. Higgins continuing where he left off following whitewash wins against Stuart Bingham and Ding Junhui in round two and the quarter-finals respectively.
Allen, chasing his second world ranking title of his career, responded superbly with a break of 119 before he dominated the third frame to go 2-1 up. A break of 58 from Higgins levelled the scores at 2-2 going into the mid-session interval.
But after the restart it was a one man show as Allen regained the lead winning frame five before he opened a two-frame advantage for the first time with a break of 56.
The next frame saw Allen on the verge of victory as a break of 81 gave him a dominant 5-2 lead.
And the world number nine booked his place in the final after a run of 76 completed a flawless and emphatic win. From 2-2 Allen had scored a total of 285 points without reply.
Earlier in the day Matthew Stevens reached his first major ranking final since 2008 after a thrilling win over Neil Robertson.