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Result: Ronnie O'Sullivan crashes out of Masters to John Higgins

:Headline: Result: Ronnie O'Sullivan crashes out of Masters to John Higgins:
The Scot made the highest break of the tournament with a 145 clearance.
Sports Mole

John Higgins rolled back the years to beat Ronnie O’Sullivan in a high-quality quarter-final at the Masters on Friday.

The Scot triumphed 6-3 in the 70th meeting between the two long-standing rivals, which featured five centuries, including four in successive frames.

O’Sullivan opened up with a 97, but Higgins levelled before producing the highest break of the tournament with a clearance of 145 and it proved the catalyst for a succession of outstanding breaks.

He followed it up with 110 before O’Sullivan replied with runs of 125 and 103 to draw level at 3-3.

But Higgins, a two-time Masters champion, was not to be denied this time and breaks of 134 and 88 put him in control and he closed out the match to set up a semi-final showdown with David Gilbert.

The 45-year-old told the BBC: “I enjoyed it. It was a really good high standard. There were only a couple of little mistakes we both made and it could have gone either way.

“I am delighted with the way I played and the way I turned up in a big game against one of the best players.”

“I am delighted with the way I played and the way I turned up in a big game against one of the best players”
- John Higgins

O’Sullivan, who last won the competition in 2017, admitted he lost to the better man on the night in Milton Keynes.

He said: “I just made too many unforced errors. I know the breaks look pretty good on the scoresheet and if you look at that you’d probably say fantastic.

“But when you miss easy balls, unforced errors and some slack safety shots against someone like John – when he is playing as well as he was – you are not going to win.”

Earlier in the day Yan Bingtao produced the best break of his career to beat Stephen Maguire and book a semi-final meeting with defending champion Stuart Bingham.

A score of 141 earned the tournament debutant a 6-5 win after a back-and-forth encounter.

Maguire produced a 137-break earlier in the match, but Yan saved his best till last to triumph.

Following victory over Neil Robertson in a deciding frame in the previous round, the 20-year-old is now only two wins away from a maiden major title.

Yan claimed the first two frames of this match, but quality was in short order until Maguire levelled the scores with a 102 break in the fourth.

It seemed the Scot had the momentum when he took the lead for the first time in the next frame, but consecutive half-century breaks put Yan back in front.

Maguire produced a 137 to restore parity, but his Chinese rival responded to move within one frame of victory.

A fluked red then helped Maguire to a break of 60, levelling the match at 5-5, but Yan closed out victory in style with a masterful break of 141.

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3Leicester CityLeicester25154644271749
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19West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom2638152055-3517
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Premier League Table
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City26195252163662
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd25147453322149
3Leicester CityLeicester26154745301549
4West Ham UnitedWest Ham2613674031945
5Chelsea25127641251643
6Liverpool25117745341140
7Everton2412483733440
8Tottenham HotspurSpurs25116841271439
9Aston Villa24123938261239
10Arsenal26114113427737
11Leeds UnitedLeeds26112134344-135
12Wolverhampton WanderersWolves2697102733-634
13Crystal Palace2696112943-1433
14Southampton2586113143-1230
15Burnley2677121834-1628
16Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton26511102633-726
17Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2675142744-1726
18Fulham26411112132-1123
19West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom2638152055-3517
20Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd2532201541-2611
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