David Gilbert has battled his way into the semi-finals of the Masters for the second year on the spin, with an impressive 6-5 victory over Kyren Wilson.
The Farmer made it into the final four on debut last year and has repeated the feat this time around, with hopes of going still further ahead of Saturday’s semi-finals where he will meet either Ronnie O’Sullivan or John Higgins.
It was an epic struggle between Gilbert and Wilson, with some very drawn-out frames and extended safety battles, although there was plenty of high quality snooker as well, with Wilson making two centuries.
The Warrior appeared to be making the majority of the running for the majority of the game, with Gilbert pinching a couple of big frames at crucial times.
Wilson was 3-2 ahead and could easily have won the next two frames but lost them both, having the lead back to the Farmer.
A couple of excellent breaks (107 and 80) from Wilson saw him retake the lead and go one from victory, but Gilbert made a couple of half-centuries in the final two frames.
He didn’t get over the line with that last substantial break, with plenty of points left on the table when Gilbert broke down, but with a 66-point lead, Wilson couldn’t do enough to pinch the win after missing a pink to middle when the chance presented itself.
‘It was a real grind, I’m not going to win the Masters playing like that, I know that,’ said Gilbert. ‘But to be still in it is great.’
‘I’ve just got to find my scoring boots, that’s my strong bit, but it’s not quite been there.
‘But look, I’m still in, I’m usually on the M1 by now.’
It is a remarkable win for GIlbert, who has struggled all season so far, but wins over Joe Perry and now Wilson puts him into the semi-finals and guarantees him £60,000.
He wasn’t at his best for a lot of the game, but Dave won’t care as he moves into the semis.
Higgins and O’Sullivan meet on Friday night with the Farmer taking on the winner on Saturday.
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