Masters snooker 2021 LIVE - Ronnie O'Sullivan takes on John Higgins for semi-final spot
Masters snooker 2021 LIVE - After yesterday's epic action which saw David Gilbert book his place in the semi-finals, the quarter-finals continue with 20-year-old Yan Bingtao up against Stephen Maguire at 1pm. Then at 7pm, it's the big one, John Higgins v Ronnie O'Sullivan. Watch every ball live on Eurosport 1, eurosport.co.uk and the Eurosport app.
Higgins masterclass too much for O'Sullivan as he books semi-final spot at the Masters
We'll be back with live coverage from 12.45pm tomorrow. Take care out there, night night.
He looks knackered - you would do, given the level of concentration required to play at that level for that long - but he's rightly thrilled and well aware of what he's taken part in as he's interviewed by Colin Murray and Neal Foulds. Higgins admits he lost count of the centuries on the bounce - the five between them were just one shy of the all-time record - but he was well aware of what was needed for the highest break prize when he tucked away his magnificent 145.
John Higgins is through to the semi-finals
That was exceptional from the Wizard of Wishaw, rolling back the years to steamroller the world champion who was at the top of his game too. Higgins and O'Sullivan have staged so many classics down the years, and the history between them at the Masters alone is legendary. Tonight is a worthy addition to that cannon, and John now has a great chance to win his third Masters title. It would be his first since 2006 and his first Triple Crown title in a decade. O'Sullivan played his part in this epic too, which saw an 88, 97 and five centuries in just nine frames. What a standard, what a pair of players.
O'Sullivan 3-6 Higgins
Higgins misses the second to last red, but Ronnie knows it's done and concedes. John Higgins has produced a performance for the ages to advance to the semi-final of the Masters.
O'Sullivan 3-5 Higgins (12-69)
A brief scare for Higgins as he's forced to take the green, meaning he'll need one of the last three reds, and he's lost position slightly on the open one. Instead he glides a red down the rail and into the bottom right with the extended rest, and then dumps the pink deadweight into the left middle. This one is done.
O'Sullivan 3-5 Higgins (12-58)
There are two reds near cushions, but John won't need them if he can mop up what's left. A black to right middle takes his break to 36; one more red and a colour will do it.
O'Sullivan 3-5 Higgins (12-22)
A chance for O'Sullivan, as Higgins leaves him a long red near the left rail which he cuts in. He makes 12, but after fashioning near perfect position on a red to free up the pink and other balls, he rattles it in and out of the jaws of the bottom left. The frame is there for Higgins to clean up now, it's such an inviting table. Ronnie unbuttons his waistcoat and slumps in his chair.
O'Sullivan 3-5 Higgins (0-22)
O'Sullivan needed to rattle off three frames in a row to pip Ding in a decider in the last round, can he possibly do it again here? It's a bad start, because a heavy safety shot has left Higgins a mid-range red to get going in the ninth frame, and in it goes. He needs a good recovery pot on the green to its own pocket to keep things going early on, before dropping in a superb red to left middle when cueing over the pack to land on the blue. The pack doesn't split conveniently when Higgins sends the white into them when potting said blue though, and Higgins has to play safe back to baulk.
‘Trademark wizardry!’ – Higgins completes total clearance to edge ahead
O’Sullivan 3-5 Higgins
Gah! Higgins is forced into a difficult thin cut on the yellow with the rest, and he's left it in the jaws of its own pocket. Just the 88 then, to go with the 97 and the five tons we've had in eight frames. More importantly for Higgins, he's now one frame away from the semi-finals.
O’Sullivan 3-4 Higgins (0-92)
Higgins' break goes to 72 and there's enough on for a century. It looks unlikely, with yellow, blue and a red tight to cushions, but anything's possible tonight.
O’Sullivan 3-4 Higgins (0-69)
A miscalculation from John here, as he moves to 33 when stunning the black in but missing his intended cannon into a cluster of reds. He pulls out an excellent recovery pot on a long-ish red to the bottom right though, and a straight black moves him to 69 points for the frame with only 67 left on.
O’Sullivan 3-4 Higgins (0-37)
The safety of both players has been on display for a while in this frame and hey, turns out that's pretty good too. Higgins eventually breaks the deadlock with a long red into the bottom right to land on the brown. He then survives wobbling a red into the bottom left to land plum on the black, a key shot to get the highest value colour back to its natural home.
O’Sullivan 3-4 Higgins (0-20)
Higgins breaks the stalemate by thumping in a long red to the bottom right despite the white being close to the top cushion. The brown follows, but he loses position after potting his next red. In response, he traps O'Sullivan in a brutal snooker behind the yellow. Ronnie misses the reds with his first go and doesn't leave anything; his second attempt catches the blue and he's left John straight on a red over the bottom left. That goes in, but Higgins trusts to luck on position when going into the reds and doesn't get any. All he has on is a yahoo at a yellow over the green pocket, and he can't force it in.
O’Sullivan 3-4 Higgins (0-4)
It's a tense start to the eighth frame as each player just about gets away with a loose safety shot. Both must be so wary of leaving the other any kind of look at an open red. O'Sullivan gives four away when trying to drop deadweight on a red on the bottom cushion, but makes it at the second attempt. For the moment the barrage of heavy scoring has subsided and we're locked in a safety exchange.
O’Sullivan 3-4 Higgins
It's another total clearance for Higgins, 134 this time, and he's back in the lead. This is absolutely staggering, I'm running out of ways to describe it.
O’Sullivan 3-3 Higgins (0-104)
Higgins cuts one of those reds into the right middle, followed by the blue to bring up the fifth century in a row in this match. He then thunders in the final red down the rail and into the bottom right. My word.
O’Sullivan 3-3 Higgins (0-73)
The frame is now in the bank, Higgins has regained the lead. There are two awkward reds near the right rail that might impede the century, but nothing looks like getting in the way of these two tonight.
O’Sullivan 3-3 Higgins (0-50)
Higgins cuts a blue to left middle to come off two cushions and crack into a cluster of reds below the pink. That's a great shot to secure his half-century. It's also a gateway to winning the frame and possibly a fifth ton in a row in this match.
O’Sullivan 3-3 Higgins (0-29)
O'Sullivan's break brings a red up the table, and it's on to the left middle. Higgins drills it in, of course he does, and comes back down the table off the green. On 21 he booms in the black to go into the pack, but he's only on a difficult, short stab to left middle...but in it goes and he's on the black.
O’Sullivan 3-3 Higgins
It's four centuries in a row as O'Sullivan clears the table for a 103 to pull level. Wow.
O’Sullivan 2-3 Higgins (69-30)
A blue takes O'Sullivan to a half-century, and he tidies up the two remaining reds in the open with colours to leave Higgins needing a snooker. He won't becoming back for it though, because Ronnie doubles the final red to land on the black! This is quite unbelievable, I'm not sure I've ever seen anything quite like this.
O’Sullivan 2-3 Higgins (30-30)
This could be big. Higgins misses a red down the right rail with the rest, and leaves virtually the same shot for O'Sullivan. It's tight, but Ronnie cuts it right into the heart of the pocket to land on the pink. He's soon into the pack off the black, only with a glancing contact, but it develops a number of reds in the process. A mid-range red keeps him going after landing the wrong side of the blue, and he's level on points in the frame soon after. O'Sullivan is hitting the centre of the pocket with every pot, this is stunning.
O’Sullivan 2-3 Higgins (0-24)
O'Sullivan goes agonisingly close with a long red after John's break, watching it rattle in and out of the jaws of the bottom right. He put everything in to that to get on the black, and he's left Higgins a thin red to bottom left. In it goes, and Higgins also goes into the pack to develop reds and land nicely on the black. Such is the standard, that miss could cost Ronnie the frame in the next ten minutes. It's three reds with blacks so far.
O’Sullivan 2-3 Higgins
The frame is long secured before O'Sullivan rattles in a century. He clears the lot for a magnificent total clearance of 125; that's three centuries in a row, and we were only denied three totals in a row because Higgins didn't bother with the final black before the interval. There are only a handful of players in history that could cope at this altitude.
O’Sullivan 1-3 Higgins (53-0)
It's another half-century for O'Sullivan and he's purring here. Nothing's rattling or going in off the jaw, it's all dead centre. This is mesmerising, from both players.
O’Sullivan 1-3 Higgins (23-0)
O'Sullivan's back with his first legit pot after the re-rack expunged his one after the interval, stroking a red into the bottom left and going up for the green after Higgins' containing safety failed to stick to the bottom cushion. He's soon into the pack off the black but he's on a red to right middle; it goes in, but to the soundtrack of a monstrous kick that throws the white out of position. No matter; he finds a brilliant recovery pot on the green to regain position and he's looking good in the fifth.
O’Sullivan 1-3 Higgins
We're back, and Higgins' incredible run of potting ends when he misses a thin cut on a red to the bottom right. O'Sullivan steps in to wallop it into the pocket, but can't force position on the blue. A safety exchange follows, and with both players glancing short shots off a red on the bottom cushion they agree a re-rack.
O’Sullivan 1-3 Higgins
It's back-to-back centuries from Higgins as he empties the table up to the pink for a 110. He is in utterly magnificent form as, in fairness, is O'Sullivan. Neither player can afford to miss here.
These two, eh? We'll be back in 15 minutes.
O’Sullivan 1-2 Higgins (0-64)
A blue to right middle is frame ball for Higgins, and he strokes it in to land on a red on the bottom cushion. O'Sullivan has missed one pot - the black, after he'd secured the first frame - and he'll be going to the interval 3-1 behind.
O’Sullivan 1-2 Higgins (0-34)
It's hard work, but he's a grafter; Higgins gets into the thirties before jarring the pink into play off the blue. This is a lot less fluent than the previous frame as it requires a lot more thought regarding position, but it's no less impressive. Also, he's managed to render a dangerous and in-form player a spectator for the past three frames.
O’Sullivan 1-2 Higgins (0-17)
Blimey, he's away again. Higgins thunders in another long red, and then jabs the yellow into its own pocket with the rest. Position on the next red isn't perfect, but he glides one effortlessly into the bottom left to go up for the blue. After grappling for position early on he's got it now, but he's only got the blue and the baulk colours to play for at the moment.
O’Sullivan 1-2 Higgins
Higgins empties the table for a 145, the biggest break of the tournament so far. Of course he does; he's John Higgins.
O’Sullivan 1-1 Higgins (0-110)
It's a ton for Higgins, and there are still two reds out there. Yan Bingtao hit the highest break of the tournament earlier today with 143, and there's a potential 146 on here. A pink after the second last red makes it a possible 145, and he's heading towards the black. What a player this man is.
O’Sullivan 1-1 Higgins (0-72)
He is 2-1 up, and looks a shoe-in for a ton here. The standard so far is everything we hoped it would be.
O’Sullivan 1-1 Higgins (0-55)
If Ronnie looks up for this, so does John. He clears a half-century in no time, and he's taking these clinically. Barring a shocker, he's going 2-1 up here.
O’Sullivan 1-1 Higgins (0-31)
A heavy safety shot from Ronnie leaves the white in the middle of the table, from where John fashions a lovely thin cut with the rest into the bottom right. He then plugs the black with the rest too, and he's away in the third. The break starts with three reds and blacks, and he's nudged the pack to develop some more reds too. A pink to the left middle nixes any hope of a maximum, but there's a great chance for Higgins to sort this in one hit.
O’Sullivan 1-1 Higgins
Another 41 from Higgins levels it up. It’s going to be really good this, isn’t it?
O’Sullivan 1-0 Higgins (1-68)
Ronnie leaves John another look at a long red from a safety, and in it goes again. He’s back in the balls at the business end of the table, and he’s only a few pots away from winning this frame. A pink makes certain of it to take this mini-break to 27.
O'Sullivan 1-0 Higgins (1-41)
It's 41 for Higgins, who runs out of position when going in and out of baulk and misses a red to the bottom left. He played it with safety in mind though, and Ronnie is back at the table but deep in baulk.
O'Sullivan 1-0 Higgins (1-30)
What a pot this is. With no obvious safety on, O'Sullivan drills a red right into the heart of the bottom right; only a light flick on another red prevents position on the black. That's unlucky, but he then plays a careless safety; he's left a red on to the bottom left, and here comes Higgins! In it goes and he's on the black, and John quickly develops reds from the pack from it. He's up to 30 already with another black from which he develops more reds; this is compelling stuff already.
O'Sullivan 1-0 Higgins
It's 97 for O'Sullivan; no ton, after missing a thin cut on the black, but a brilliant start to the match.
O'Sullivan 0-0 Higgins (72-0)
A pink after then tenth red is frame ball for O'Sullivan, and in it goes. He splits the remaining cluster of reds in the same shot, and a ton looks inevitable now.
O'Sullivan 0-0 Higgins (50-0)
Said split isn't great, but he finds a red to the right middle and then a good recovery pot on the brown to keep things going. He then stuns in a mid-range red o land on the black, and he's soon up to a half-century. This is an awesome start.
O'Sullivan 0-0 Higgins (20-0)
The first chance of the night falls to Ronnie as Higgins catches the blue with his safety. That leaves O'Sullivan a mid-range red to the bottom left, which he stuns in to land on the black. He looks so up for this, pacing the table furiously, mind whirring at the possibilities. The break quickly moves to 20, and one good split on the pack shortly will open things right up for him.
Here we go
Our MC Rob Walker is baizing the boys and we're ready to go. David Gilbert awaits the winner in the semi-final tomorrow; it's best of 11 between two of the class of '92.
You think there’s only one legendary clearance by a player called Higgins? At the 2006 Masters a year later, Ronnie missed a red when on a break of 60 at 9-9 in the final. Up stepped John to just about drop in an opening red on his way to a jaw-dropping 64 to nick the title on the black. For that, and many other preposterous clearances from seemingly doomed positions, he has earned the reputation of being perhaps the greatest under pressure match-player of all time. If you had to bet the farm on any player emptying the table to win a match, it would be him.
Ten years after that meeting, O’Sullivan pulled off the greatest single destruction of one great by another in the history of snooker to win the Masters again. His 10-3 triumph included three centuries, seven breaks of seventy plus and a half-century, less than a year on from his flattening of all-comers in the 2004 World Championship. He was untouchable; Higgins said it was like watching a computer game, and hung his napkin over his cue tip to wave the white flag as O’Sullivan compiled his winning break. But he’d be back. Oh boy, would he be back.
You boys, you boys…
Their clashes in the final of the Masters alone are a study in excellence. They first met here in the final in 1995; both players were 19 years old. It was a 9-3 victory for O’Sullivan, confirming his status as the greatest prodigy in the history of the game, but Higgins soon recovered. By 1998 he was world champion, three years before O’Sullivan got his hands on the crown, and on a meteoric and unstoppable rise of his own. And the next two times they met at the Masters? Yikes.
Welcome to live coverage of the last of the quarter-finals of the 2021 Masters. In one sense it doesn’t need a build-up, in another it absolutely does. It’s Ronnie O’Sullivan versus John Higgins. It’s 29 Triple Crown titles. It’s two of the greatest players of all-time. It’s the two heaviest break builders in history.
It's on, from 7pm.
Join us again tonight
That concludes our live coverage for this afternoon. We'll return at 6.45pm, and what a Friday night menu it is. Kings only: Ronnie O'Sullivan versus John Higgins for the remaining semi-final berth. It doesn't get any better than that.
Yan Bingtao is in the semi-finals of the Masters
He's the coming player alright. Having eliminated Neil Robertson earlier in the tournament, Yan Bingtao has now taken out Stephen Maguire. And what a way to win it; the highest break of the tournament - the highest of his whole career - amid the intense pressure of a final frame decider. That takes some bottle, which the 20-year-old seems to have a supply of which belies his age. It's a hard one to take for Maguire, who looked in control at 3-2 and 42-0 ahead, but a missed red to the right middle seemed to change the whole match. Yan will now face defending champion Stuart Bingham in the semi-final tomorrow afternoon. If he can display this temperament in the critical stages of a match, he's a serious contender in this tournament and many more to come.
Maguire 5-6 Yan
Well, that's one way to settle a row! A quite magnificent 143 from Yan - in a final frame decider - wins the match.
Maguire 5-5 Yan (0-101)
Yan brings up his century, and then jabs in a brilliant close-quarters red to the green pocket to keep it going. Even though he's now eliminated, Maguire is grinning as his highest break of the tournament, set earlier today, is now under threat. Yan could also secure the highest break of his whole career.
Maguire 5-5 Yan (0-78)
Frame ball red has gone, with a black to follow to remove any doubt. It's been an up and down afternoon for him, but this will be another magnificent victory for Yan.
Maguire 5-5 Yan (0-62)
A nice cannon on the reds above the black nudges open a few more potting lanes, and Yan is quickly over the half-century mark. This is nerveless so far, and after a loose positional shot on the black he rolls it deadweight into the bottom left to land on his next red. If he can hold it together for a few more shots, Yan will be in the semi-finals.
Maguire 5-5 Yan (0-30)
Maguire has the first chance of the decider, but misses a gun barrel straight long red and serves it up over the right middle. Yan can just get past the yellow to the potting angle, and drops it in to land on the black. He takes blacks with his first three reds, and then strokes in a superb long red to the green pocket to land on the blue. From there, he powers it into the right middle to come off two cushions and affect a lovely split on the pack. That's a great shot and, potentially, a match-winning one.
Maguire 5-5 Yan
It's 60 for Maguire, and we've got a one-frame shootout for a place in the semi-finals.
Maguire 4-5 Yan (70-28)
Maguire's break moves to 47 with frame ball red. For the fifth time in 11 matches at the 2021 Masters, we're going to a decider.
Maguire 4-5 Yan (24-28)
Yan slightly loses the white when potting the black and trying to develop other reds, forcing him into a thin cut on a red to bottom left, which misses. He's left Maguire in baulk, and he has a yahoo at a long plant to the bottom left. It misses, and that should be the end of his tournament...but a stray red drifts into the left middle! What a touch for Maguire. All of a sudden he has an inviting table and the chance to force a decider.
Maguire 4-5 Yan (23-12)
Maguire lands Yan in a fiendish snooker behind the yellow in baulk. Yan escapes at the third attempt, just about leaving the table safe after playing a thin contact off two cushions back to baulk. There's a chance for Maguire now though, with a red left over the bottom right and a direct path to it from baulk...and he's missed it! Yan tidies it up, and he's on the pink. That goes, and although it's a bit of an awkward table he can take control of the frame here.
Maguire 4-5 Yan (15-5)
Yan gets the first red down of the 10th frame, but then rattles a blue in and out of the jaws of the green pocket with the rest. That's left Maguire in, who has no margin for error now. He's made one here though; in potting the black he screws the white into the pack, and he's on nothing. In trying to escape back to baulk he then miscues horrendously, but somehow his dainty flick on the white manages to land touching to a nearby red! That's extraordinary. He then fouls shortly after, bridging over the reds to hit the white and catching a red as he does so. Nervy stuff out there.
'Have some of that!' - Maguire plays perfect safety shot against Bingtao
Maguire 4-5 Yan
A round half ton for Yan puts him just one frame away from the semi-finals.
Maguire 4-4 Yan (4-65)
Maguire catches a double kiss on a red from a deadweight safety, and it's on for Yan to the bottom right. He quickly adds 18 and with four reds left and his break still going this will put him back in the lead.
Maguire 4-4 Yan (4-47)
On 30, Yan overcuts a red to the right middle and it's end of break. Maguire eschews swerving around the yellow to try and pot said red to the same pocket, and instead tries to hammer a much more difficult red down the right of the table and into the bottom right. He misses by a huge margin, and he's left the frame at Yan's mercy. He can only add 16 though before running out of position when trying to move a cluster of reds after putting the pink. That causes him to miss a long red to the yellow pocket, played with safety in mind, and Maguire is still in this one.
Maguire 4-4 Yan (4-23)
Another chance for Yan, and this time he could make hay. He drops in a long red to the bottom left, and he quickly clears the area around the black spot to open the potting angle to both corners. There's a good spread of reds on too; this is a great chance.
Maguire 4-4 Yan (4-1)
It's now best of three for a place in the semi-finals. Yan gets the first chance of the ninth frame when Maguire sticks a red up over the left middle, but he can't fashion position on the black after running into the pack when potting it. He needs two attempts to land on the brown, giving away four with his first but landing a snooker when connecting after being put back in.
Maguire 4-4 Yan
Beat that, everyone that's left; a magnificent 137 from Maguire sets a new highest break in the 2021 Masters so far.
Maguire 3-4 Yan (110-0)
That's the century done, Maguire's second of the day. He takes a pink with the final red; it's the colours then for the highest break of the tournament.
Maguire 3-4 Yan (73-0)
The frame is in the bank; what could be up for grabs now is the highest break prize for the tournament, currently held by Kyren Wilson at 136. There's a potential 138 on for Maguire.
Maguire 3-4 Yan (52-0)
A controlled split on the reds by Maguire pops a red over the right middle, and the road map to winning this frame is there for him now. A black takes him to a half-century and leaves him on a red to the right middle, which he drops in; he's edging to the winning line in this one.
Maguire 3-4 Yan (13-0)
Judging by his expression when sat in his chair in the last frame, Maguire's internal monologue must have been quite lively. He's composed himself now though, and strokes in an imperious long red to the bottom right to start the eighth. Brown, red and black follow, and he's in good position at the business end of the table.
Maguire 3-4 Yan
An additional 22 secures a second frame on the spin for Yan.
Maguire 3-3 Yan (0-64)
Maguire can't make Yan pay; he misses a difficult red down the rail into the bottom left and he's left Yan on an easy one. That's a reprieve, and Yan moves past the winning line with a pink to left middle.
Maguire 3-3 Yan (0-50)
Yan is coasting, but mistimes a shot on pink to right middle and doesn't screw back far enough for his intended red. That forces him to pull out a recovery pot on a red with the cue extension, that wipes its feet furiously before dropping in. It then goes serious wrong on the green as he miscues completely and chips the white in the air and onto it, missing the pot by miles. Yikes.
Maguire 3-3 Yan (0-10)
Maguire misses a long red at the start of the sixth, leaving Yan a short-range thin cut to the bottom right to get going again. A plant takes him to 10 but in trying to land on the black in baulk he overhits it, only to pull out a superb recovery shot on brown to right middle. All of a sudden his confidence is back.
Maguire 3-3 Yan
A break of 84 stops the rot for Yan, and we're all square again.
Maguire 3-2 Yan (42-50)
A good recovery shot on a red to the yellow pocket steadies Yan's nerves early in this break. He rattles in 42 to bring the scores level, and then wobbles in a tricky red near the bottom cushion to land on the pink. Yan then drops in the final red from an awkward angle with the rest to bring up his half-century, and he's landed perfectly on the black. That's a brilliant shot in the circumstances, and he should see it home from here.
Maguire 3-2 Yan (42-0)
Well now, is this a turning point? Maguire takes on a red to the right middle. It's a tight path, going close past another red, and he rolls it out off the knuckles. Maguire is furious, and thumps the table with his fist. Not only has his break abruptly ended, he's left an open table to a visibly struggling Yan. In the context of the match, this is a huge visit.
Maguire 3-2 Yan (24-0)
Yan's really struggling here. He misses a long red to the bottom right, leaving Maguire plum on an easy starter to the left middle. By contrast, Maguire is starting to motor; a good early split on the pack of reds has opened this frame right up for him already.
Maguire 3-2 Yan
An additional 29 secures the frame for Maguire.
Maguire 2-2 Yan (71-0)
After a prolonged safety exchange, Maguire tags in a long red to land on the brown. It's an awkward table but there's enough in the open for him to secure the frame at this visit. Maguire screws back from the pink to land straight on the frame ball red, and in it goes followed by the pink for insurance. From 2-0 down he's about to take the lead.
Maguire 2-2 Yan (49-0)
Maguire reaches 49, but runs badly out of position after potting the brown. Rather than have a yahoo at a thin red to bottom left he opts to play safe back to baulk instead.
Maguire 2-2 Yan (16-0)
We're back, and Maguire's away first in frame five with what seems to have been a fluked plant into the bottom right. The pink follows, and he's bang in position here.
Maguire 2-2 Yan
That's more like it! A 102 from Maguire secures the fourth frame, and it's two-all. The players will now take a break for 15 minutes, see you shortly.
'Wow!' - Bingtao produces stunning long red on way to winning opening frame
Maguire 1-2 Yan (70-2)
Frame ball red goes, as does a blue to left middle to make sure. We'll be all square at the break.
Maguire 1-2 Yan (56-2)
It's a rapid half-century for Maguire, who suddenly has his tail up. Two more reds with high value colours and he's home and dry in this one.
Maguire 1-2 Yan (16-2)
Maguire misses a long red at the start of the fourth, sticking it up over the left middle for Yan, who drops it in but then misses a thin blue to the left middle. He immediately gets another gimme though as Maguire leaves a red on over the bottom right, but then misses another htin blue to the left middle to leave Maguire in. Yan's suddenly gone off the boil here, can Maguire step in and draw level at the interval?
Maguire 1-2 Yan
Maguire clears up to the yellow, and gets his first frame on the board.
Maguire 0-2 Yan (61-6)
Maguire's snooker yields eight points in misses; Yan now needs everything on the table to force a respotted black. Another snooker, this time behind the yellow, forces another miss from Yan and he's left a red on. That should be that.
Maguire 0-2 Yan (49-6)
A chance for Yan, as Maguire nudges a red over the bottom right when playing safe. Yan plugs it, but then misses a virtually straight pink to left middle. Did he get a kick then? Either way this frame, and this table, are a mess. Maguire's back in, but has a load of work to do to secure it at this visit as four of the remaining reds are near the black and all blocking each other. He adds 14 and snookers Yan behind the blue; there's 51 left on the table.
Maguire 0-2 Yan (35-5)
Maguire's in again, thundering in a red and again forcing the white through a crowd of reds to land on the blue. He soon misses a red to the yellow pocket with the rest though, and is visibly furious with himself as he leaves the table. It's not happening for him here. Yan steps in to mop the red up, but a poor positional shot off the brown causes him to miss a thin cut on his next red. Maguire gets his third chance of the frame, and a long pink into the green pocket has put him in good position at last. He can only add 22 though before sticking to a red and not leaving a shot on the pink, and that's end of break.
Maguire 0-2 Yan (7-0)
Maguire picks out a superb long red to the bottom right, barrelling the white through another red and forcing it up the table to land on the blue. That's a great pot, but he soon makes a hash of another positional shot as he catches a red to bottom left far too thick and he's not on the black. Back to baulk goes the white, and he'll be kicking himself.
Maguire 0-2 Yan
He's done it! A nerveless 49 nicks the second frame right from under Maguire's nose.
Maguire 0-1 Yan (55-38)
He's done it again! Yan's left near the top cushion, with only one red to go at, and he drops it nonchalantly into the bottom left to land on the black. This young man is a serious player already at 20, he could be some force in the coming decade. He's mopped up the reds with colours, and if he takes the 27 left he'll be two frames in front.
Maguire 0-1 Yan (55-16)
Intriguing stuff here; Maguire runs slightly out of position on pink to red, clipping another red to leave a longer pot to the bottom left, and he misses it by a wide margin. He's a little edgy right now, and with four reds still on Yan is still well in this frame.
Maguire 0-1 Yan (40-16)
It's another beauty from Yan as he tags a long red into the bottom right to land on the green. He's striking it beautifully today, and there's a load on here for him. Just as he looks set to take the frame though, he misses what looks a simple cut on a red to bottom left with the rest, and he's left it hanging in the jaws. It's Maguire's to lose now.
Maguire 0-1 Yan (40-4)
Yan, from tight on the top cushion, is forced to pot his way out of trouble and does. He digs right under the white to drill a red into the bottom left, pulling up just before the baulk line to leave a shot on the yellow with the rest. He can only add one more red beyond that though as he clips the green when trying to go in and out of baulk, and it's end of break.
Maguire 0-1 Yan (40-0)
Maguire fires straight back at the start of the second, dropping in a superb, deadweight long red into the bottom right to land on the black. An early split on the reds has worked out perfectly, and he's got the black on to both corners here. Maguire gets five reds and five blacks down, but just as the balls start to look perfectly set for a maxi attempt his positional shot goes awry and he lands touching on a red with no pot on. Darn! He plays safe to baulk and Yan is back to the table.
Maguire 0-1 Yan
What a shot from Yan! Maguire has him in bother, with the white near the bottom cushion, and no obvious path back to it off the two reds at the top end of the table. Yan thinks for over a minute, and then hoses a long red right into the heart of the yellow pocket. That's a stunner, and he mops up the final red and colours to take the first frame.
Maguire 0-0 Yan (36-52)
Yan's been gifted a reprieve here, as Maguire nudges a red across the line of his pot on the black and his break curtails on 30. That was a loose shot, but he's played a good snooker in response. There are two reds left on the table.
Maguire 0-0 Yan (9-52)
After a safety exchange Yan jams in the next red, but just as he settles in to what looks likely to be a frame-winning break, he makes a mess of a plant by catching the pink first and scatters reds everywhere. It's six to Maguire and a chance to steal. He pots a superb long yellow after his first red to get in position, and he's away.
Maguire 0-0 Yan (0-40)
It's five reds and blacks for Yan, but after landing bullet straight on the black and with no angle to develop the tight pack of reds he plays safe to baulk.
Maguire 0-0 Yan (0-16)
Both players miss their first attempt at a pot, but Maguire leaves his in the jaws of the bottom right to gift Yan a chance to get going. He uses the rest to prod another red onto it and land on the black. This is a good chance for Yan.
Here we go...
MC Rob Walker is bringing out the players. Best of 11 then for the right to play defending champion Stuart Bingham in the semi-finals.
Yan the Man
Speaking of prodigies, Yan Bingtao is one of the most exciting young talents in the game right now. He reached the final of the Northern Ireland Open in 2017 aged just 17, and last season he won the Riga Masters to land the first ranking event title of his career. He’s now in the top 16 in the world, and this is his first appearance at the Masters. The next decade of this great game looks set to feature Yan heavily.
Stephen is one of the more enigmatic talents on the snooker circuit. In the 2004-05 season he hit a streak that looked like it might launch a career to be ranked alongside his compatriots Stephen Hendry and John Higgins, as he mowed down everyone in sight to secure an emphatic victory at the UK Championship. It stunned everyone – particularly Ronnie – but he never really cashed it in; he’s won six ranking events and been a world number two, but he’s only reached one other Triple Crown final since that UK victory in 2004.
Welcome to live coverage of the conclusion of the Masters quarter-finals. The boys will be baized at 1pm.
Good morning everyone! We hope you are rested and ready for Eurosport's covergae of the second quarter-final day at the Masters! Yesterday was a fantastic day as David Gilbert and Stuart Bingham made their way to the semi-finals. Today however, things are going to get even better. We start off with a real doozy as 20-year-old Yan Bingtao, who dumped out world number two Neil Robertson, faces Stephen Maguire, who knocked out three-times champion of the world Mark Selby. Maguire is an experienced head and it is going to be fascinating to watch how he copes with Yan, who showed wiseness beyond his years against Robertson. Then tonight we get a showdown between two of the all-time greats, members of the Class of 92. Yes it's John Higgins against Ronnie O'Sullivan, it doesn't get much better than that.
Full Masters schedule
Sunday January 10
Kyren Wilson 6-2 Gary Wilson (1pm)
Joe Perry 2-6 David Gilbert (7pm)
Monday January 11
Stuart Bingham 6-4 Thepchaiya Un-Nooh (1pm)
Shaun Murphy 6-4 Mark Williams (7pm)
Tuesday January 12
Neil Robertson 5-6 Yan Bingtao (1pm)
Mark Selby 3-6 Stephen Maguire (7pm)
Wednesday January 13
Ronnie O'Sullivan 6-5 Ding Junhui (1pm)
John Higgins 6-5 Mark Allen (7pm)
Thursday January 14
David Gilbert 6-5 Kyren Wilson (1pm)
Stuart Bingham 6-3 Shaun Murphy (7pm)
Friday January 15
John Higgins v Ronnie O'Sullivan (1pm)
Stephen Maguire v Yan Bingtao (7pm)
Saturday January 16
Stuart Bingham v Maguire / Yan (1pm)
David Gilbert v Higgins / O'Sullivan (7pm)
Sunday January 17
TBC v TBC (1pm, 7pm)
HOW TO WATCH THE MASTERS 2021 TV AND LIVESTREAM
You can watch every moment of the Masters live and ad-free on the Eurosport app and eurosport.co.uk.
The Masters will also be broadcast on Eurosport 1 across the week.