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Mark Selby fights back but John Higgins still leads overnight

Mark Selby fights back but John Higgins still leads overnight

30/04/2017 at 22:30Updated 01/05/2017 at 06:38

Defending world champion Mark Selby launched a fightback late on Sunday evening against John Higgins but he still trails 10-7 overnight in the World Championship final.

Having struggled for most of the day Selby ended really well, winning the final three frames of the evening.

Higgins still holds a lead but Selby's swagger returned in the final frames and the momentum may well have swung back to the defending champion.

Higgins had started the second mini-session really well, winning the first frame to ensure that he would have a lead overnight before producing an outrageous plant to open up a six frame lead.

Video - Did he mean it? - Higgins produces incredible plant

01:41

However just when it seemed as if Selby was sinking without a trace he got a bit of luck as Higgins misses the pink whilst opening the pack.

This proved to be the break the world number one needed as he broke away to secure a break of 81 and the following frame he landed a 121, his first century of the final.

In the final frame before the interval Selby looked in control until he let Higgins back at the table however not for the first time Higgins lost his positioning and looked unhappy with the table.

The four-time champion vented his frustration with a loose shot and Selby took advantage with an excellent long red to secure the frame and keep the final interesting.

The pair shared the first mini-session of the evening with two frames apiece with Selby winning the first and last of the session.

After a really tense opening, that saw over 11 minutes pass without a pot, Selby eventually sank a red to the middle and he potted very well to get a frame back.

Video - Higgins produces magnificent 141 break

02:14

However Higgins then cleared up very well on two occasions as he won the battle of the safety's.

But Selby came back in the last frame, taking advantage as Higgins failed to sink a crucial pink.

AFTERNOON REPORT

Having fought back on two occasions in the first mini-session to be level at 2-2 Higgins then took control in the second mini-session.

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The second mini-session was blighted by both players failing to finish off frames and letting their opponents back in.

In the fifth Higgins let Selby in only to then find himself back on the table as his opponent was unable to dislodge the reds that had nestled on the side cushion, and Higgins made no mistake this time as he took a lead for the first time.

The sixth took a while to get going but when Higgins did find himself amongst the balls he made it count, making a break of 95.

Selby was guilty of throwing away a frame in the seventh as he led 52-1 only to miss a red and see Higgins come back with a break of 58.

Then in the final frame before the break it had seemed as if Higgins had it all wrapped up but he missed a couple of pots and all of a sudden an epic safety battle unfolded, with Selby producing a sensational pot on the red.

But he couldn't see out the frame and Higgins came back to make it 6-2.

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Earlier Higgins started the first frame of the match well but Selby took his chance after his opponent's break of 34, notching in a 76 to get underway.

In the second Higgins was in control from the start as Selby struggled with a safety despite a massive fluke on a red.

Video - Selby enjoys amazing fluke in final against Higgins

00:19

Higgins twice missed opportunities in the third but they were only chances to stay in the frame, with Selby already leading the way following a break of 62.

The first ton of the match, a terrific 141, drew Higgins back into the match with nothing to separate the pair.

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