Ding To Take On O’Sullivan In Premier League Final

Yesterday saw the two Premier League semi-finals played to a conclusion with victories for first Ding Junhui and then defending champion Ronnie O’Sullivan. Click below for a summary of Saturday’s play…

The evening began at the Potters Leisure Resort with the semi-final between Ding Junhui and Judd Trump, with the latter widely tipped as the favourite to come through and book his place in Sunday’s final.

As it was, the first couple of frames were edgy, particularly the second which lasted for some 28 minutes and eventually went the way of Trump to level the match at 1-1. Having had a chance to lead 2-0, even at this stage of the match it looked as though it might have an unsettling effect on Ding and a missed black off the spot allowed Judd to move into the lead in a matter of minutes.

Ding though to his credit responded in fine style with an excellent break to make it 2-2, in particular a red into a corner pocket from close to the cushion as well as a brave yellow dropped into the right-centre with difficult cueing.

This proved to be an important visit in the match and one that seemed to inspire Ding as he produced a fabulous total clearance of 139 in frame five before a missed red to the left-centre from an increasingly erratic Trump allowed him to move two clear in the match for the first time at 4-2.

Trump was able to respond in frame seven, a fabulous safety forcing the decisive error from Ding from which he was able to close to 3-4, but Ding was not to be denied and duly wrapped up a 5-3 win in the next frame.

The second semi-final began in a similar fashion to the first as both Mark Williams and in particular Ronnie O’Sullivan looked to be slightly edgy. It was the Welshman who was able to take the first frame against a player who has proven to be something of a bogey player for him in recent years and he had clear chances to make it 2-0 in the next.

Crucially however he could not take them and as O’Sullivan got his first frame on the board to level at 1-1, even at that early stage there was a sense that this could prove to be a significant moment in the match.

So it proved as although Mark was able to level at 2-2, a few surprising errors as well as some rather unkind run of the balls saw the momentum switch to the defending champion and O’Sullivan was able to take the final three frames to secure a 5-2 win and his customary place in the final.

Will it be seven titles from the last eight for Ronnie or will Ding deny him? Find out from 7:30pm on SkySports4 this evening.