The teeming Tempodrom in Berlin is the greatest venue in world snooker, according to China's top-ranked player Zhao Xintong.
The world number nine enjoyed a surprisingly comfortable evening at the 2,500-capacity arena on Friday in ending Judd Trump's bid for a third straight German Masters title with a 5-1 win.
Breaks 57, 57, 59, 58, 52 and 84 saw the free-wheeling UK champion ease through in style to secure a best-of-11 frame semi-final meeting with the rejuvenated three-times ranking event winner Ricky Walden on Saturday afternoon (1pm GMT LIVE on Eurosport).
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A sell-out crowd is expected for the weekend in the German capital and Zhao is grateful for the opportunity to revel in the atmospheric one-table green baize experience of Berlin.
“I am so happy to be in the semi-finals in the best venue in the world," said 24-year-old Zhao. "I hope that I can play well and I will enjoy it.
“It is amazing. I can’t believe it. When I got the last frame (against Judd Trump) I didn’t think I’d won. I had to check it wasn’t a best of 11 game. I am very happy.
Judd is the best player in the world, so this match is a big deal for me. I can have more confidence to win more matches now.
“Winning the UK Championship was very important for me. I think I’ve grown up and I’m playing better than last year. I am confident now and I believe that I can do it."
A new name will adorn the German Masters in the 12th staging of the Tempodrom tournament on Sunday night with Zhao's friend and compatriot Yan Bingtao facing Northern Ireland Open champion Mark Allen in the second semi-final on Saturday night.
The trophy and an £80,000 first prize await the winner from the season's ninth ranking event.
Stream the 2022 German Masters and much more top snooker action live and on demand on discovery+
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