Friday, 20 January 2012

Murphy marches into maiden Masters semi

Shaun Murphy took advantage of an out-of-sorts Mark Selby to book a place in his first ever Masters semi-final.

Picture by Monique Limbos
The Magician, who has cued beautifully in both of his wins at Alexandra Palace this week, beat the world number one 6-2 and will now be brimming with a confidence as he launches an assault at the only major missing title from his collection.

The world number six is the envy of many of the game's top stars because by the age of just 26 he had both the World Championship and UK Championship trophies in the bag.

To complete the prestigious majors trio, only the Masters is missing and until tonight he'd not been past the quarter-final stage.

There was no danger of him losing out in the last eight again tonight though as he was in superb form for the second match in succession.

Positive Murphy took the game to Selby. The Jester was way off of form but it's a credit to Shaun that he didn't let him get a foothold of the game. After falling 1-0 behind, he hit back hard and motored into a commanding 5-1 lead. There was no way back from there.

Murphy is playing well and will fancy  his chances of going all the way now but next up is world champion John Higgins.

The Scot - like Murphy - has won both his matches with frames to spare this week and will present a steely test.

He'll need a little bit of magic to see him through.

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