Judd Trump produced his best performance for some time as he fought off an impressive comeback to secure a place in The Masters quarter-finals.
The Bristol Ace is yet to win The Masters but in this form he might take some stopping after playing out what was described by pundits as the best match of the tournament so far.
Trump played some of his famously branded naughty snooker early on to waltz into a 5-1 lead against China’s Liang Wenbo before a stunning comeback took the match much deeper than the excited crowd were expecting.
This season’s European Masters winner looked back to his best form as ruthless breaks of 50, 83 and 72 gave him a deserved 3-1 lead at the interval.
Trump then seized upon Wenbo’s mistakes to extend his lead to 5-1 with the world number three looking well out of sight.
But Wenbo, who won the English Open last season, showed once again why he is such a dangerous player as he riled in breaks of 51, 58, 139 – the tournament’s highest break so far – and 116 to suddenly make it 5-4 and create a tense finish.
And a stunning long red looked to have given Wenbo a great chance of levelling the scores at 5-5 and forcing a deciding frame but a missed mid-range green was to cost him the match.
The miss allowed an under-pressure Trump to clear with ease as another ruthless and quality break of 85 saw him seal a 6-4 win.
Trump will next face either Shaun Murphy or Ali Carter in the quarter-finals.