At just 17-years-old Yan Bingtao is now just one win away from rewriting snooker’s history books.
The talented teenager beat another exciting young Chinese prospect in Lyu Haotian to seal a place in his first major ranking final.
Should Bingtao beat Mark Williams today in the best-of-17 frame final, he will become the sport’s youngest ever champion – beating the record of Ronnie O’Sullivan when he lifted the UK Championship in 1993.
And the 17-year-old should feel confident going into the final after his impressive season – which saw reach the International Championship semi-finals just weeks ago – continued with a convincing 6-2 victory over his Chinese counterpart.
It was the first occasion that a ranking event semi-final has been contested between two teenagers.
The match got off to a scrappy start with neither player showing great form as maybe they were both nervous. The opening four frames were split and they went into the mid-session at 2-2.
When they returned it was Yan, who reached the semi with a tremendous burst to the line winning four frames on the bounce with breaks of 75 and 114, to book his place in the final.
Williams, who has not a won a major ranking event since 2011, progressed to today’s final after he comfortably beat Elliot Slessor 6-2 in the first semi-final match.
However, as reported last night on The Old Green Baize, there is some uncertainty regarding whether today’s final will go ahead due to Williams’ wife being taken to hospital last night. Williams indicated on Twitter he may have to pull out.
World Snooker tweeted last night the final would go ahead ‘as it stands’ but there has been no further update since then.
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