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Northern Ireland Open: John Higgins downs Yan Bingtao to set up final against Belfast boy Mark Allen

October 17, 2021 GMT

John Higgins gave a sensational performance as he romped past Masters champion Yan Bingtao on Saturday night to set up a Northern Ireland Open final against hometown hero Mark Allen.

Higgins comfortably made his way 6-2 past a potential banana skin in China’s Yan, who overcame world number three Ronnie O’Sullivan in the third round.

It was a measure of revenge for the Scot ” Yan sealed his Masters title back in January with a win over Higgins.

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Higgins, the world number seven, is looking for his first ranking tournament win since sealing the Players Championship title back in February against O’Sullivan.

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In Saturday’s match, Higgins registered breaks of 90, 83, 78 and 75 on his way to the convincing win against the Chinese number two, Yan.

In the other semi-final, Allen downed England’s Ricky Walden 5-0 to reach his first Belfast final.

Allen previously beat Judd Trump, who had claimed the Belfast title in 2018, 2019 and 2020, after trailing the reigning champion 0-3.

The Northern Ireland Open is the third ranking event of the 2021-22 campaign and the first of the Home Nations tournaments of the snooker season.

This article originally appeared on the South China Morning Post (SCMP), the leading news media reporting on China and Asia. For more SCMP stories, please download our mobile app, follow us on Twitter, and like us on Facebook.

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