Ding into Welsh Open final

  • Last Updated: March 1 2014, 23:10 GMT

World number three Ding Junhui reached the final of the Welsh Open with victory over Joe Perry on Saturday afternoon.

Ding Junhui: Seeking a fifth ranking title of the season
Ding Junhui: Seeking a fifth ranking title of the season

The Chinese star claimed a 6-4 win at Newport Centre as he remains on track for his second Welsh Open title in three years and his fifth ranking title of the season - a feat that would equal the record of five set by Stephen Hendry in the 1990-91 season.

Ding, who survived a big scare to defeat teenager Joel Walker 5-4 in the quarter-finals, managed to hold on after Perry looked like he could stage a fightback.

The 26-year-old was trailing to his English opponent after losing the first frame before he won the next three - the second with a break of 114 - and Perry went on to win the next two frames, breaking with 73 during the second to make it 3-3 as they battled on with just four frames left to settle the match.

Ding won the seventh with a break of 88 and also took the next frame, with Perry, ranked 15th in the world, fighting to stay in the match, winning the ninth with a 69 break.

But the Chinese scored an impressive 118 break to seal victory in the 10th frame and set up a final clash with either Ronnie O'Sullivan or Barry Hawkins.

Ding was delighted to reach the final, but admitted he needs to work harder on Sunday.

He told the official World Snooker website: "I don't know what happened with my white ball control - it always causes me trouble.

"In the last frame the black was on the spot but I had to take the yellow or green because I lost position. I think I need to do better tomorrow.

"I am confident because I have won a lot of matches this season. I don't feel too much pressure when the scoreline is close - I can handle it."


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