It was the score not one snooker fan expected – but John Higgins whitewashed Ronnie O’Sullivan to reach the semi-finals of the Scottish Open.
Just like a year ago, the Scot beat O’Sullivan in the quarter-final stages of the Glasgow based ranking event but this time it was even better after he beat his arch rival 5-0 and made three centuries in successive frames.
O’Sullivan, bidding to win his fourth ranking event of the season, was not at his best and any mistakes made were punished by Higgins who is aiming to go one better than he did last year in his home ranking event.
Last year’s Scottish Open runner up made breaks of 55, 109, 117, 105 and 72 in a true masterclass of break building to end O’Sullivan’s ten-match winning streak which saw him be crowned UK Championship winner last weekend.
Higgins will next face Australian Neil Robertson who also hit three centuries in a thrilling final frame encounter against China’s Xiao Guodong.
Robertson looked in control when breaks of 114 and 128 helped him to a 3-1 lead. Guodong then reduced it to 3-2 before Robertson made a break of 118 to go 4-2 up.
But Guodong then won the next two frames to force a decider which Robertson sealed with a break of 79.
Judd Trump proved too strong for Scotland’s very own Stephen Maguire as the Bristol Ace won 5-2.
Trump, winner of this season’s European Masters will next face China’s Cao Yupeng who made breaks of 89 and 56 to beat Ricky Walden 5-3.
Yupeng is through to his second ranking event semi-final of the campaign following his impressive run in the European Masters. Earlier this week Yupeng made his first career 147 meaning he is likely to net an additional £22,000 in prize money from his total match-winning earnings this week.