Mark Williams sets up John Higgins final at World Snooker Championship

Mark Williams
Mark Williams

Mark Williams finally reeled in Barry Hawkins to win their World Snooker semi-final 17-15, setting up a showdown with fellow veteran John Higgins.

Williams trailed from the outset and only moved ahead in the match for the first time at 16-15, before securing his first final appearance since 2003 - the year he won the second of two world titles.

It was hard on Hawkins, who once again reserved his best snooker for the Crucible, but he was made to pay for the latest in a string of errors in what proved to be the final frame as the Welshman advanced.

Williams potted a long green to open up a match-winning opportunity, but he was fortunate that the pink ran safe after a failed attempt to double it.

Hawkins, needing just the pink, was unable to force an opening and when he left Williams another long-range opportunity, the Welshman took full advantage to finally seal victory.

Williams earlier in the tournament promised to do his post-final press conference naked if he went on to land the title.

And he is standing by that commitment, saying: "I'll be sat here with nothing on at all."

He added: "I'm knackered. I was gone in the end and couldn't pot three balls in a row. He sort of collapsed. We were like two pub players trying to get over the line. I'm over the moon to get through to the final."

He accepts Higgins has an advantage, saying in a 12.30am press conference: "He's bound to. It's nearly one o'clock in the morning and I'm here talking to you lot. He's probably fast asleep. But there's only two more days so I'm sure I can give it one last push."

Williams will face Higgins in the final, their first meeting in Sheffield since 2011 and the only time they've squared off in a match for the World Championship title.

The Scot had earlier shaken off Kyren Wilson with a measured display to keep alive his hopes of a fifth world title.

Higgins was among Williams' victims when last the left-hander won the World Championship, while Higgins beat Williams en route to his latest title in 2011.

One of their finest encounters came in the final of the 2010 UK Championship, which Higgins won 10-9 after a tense final frame.

Related snooker links

Like what you've read?
Help your friends Know It All by sharing this article to your social media.

Most Read

Marc Leishman with the CIMB Classic trophy1

World Cup of Golf: Team-by-team guide

Ben Coley profiles each and every team in this week's World Cup of Golf, including favourites Australia and England's Ryder Cup duo.

Jasper Cillessen celebrates2

Nations League review: Dutch delight

Holland scored twice in the last five minutes to snatch a dramatic 2-2 draw in Germany and qualify for next year's Nations League Finals at the expense of world champions France.

Nap Of The Day
3

Daily Nap: It's our Destiny

David Ord provides Tuesday's racing nap, next best and treble with the bet of the day running shortly after midday at Lingfield.

Might Bite4

Fehily in line for Might Bite ride

Noel Fehily will ride favourite Might Bite in Saturday's Betfair Chase if regular partner Nico de Boinville fails to recover from injury in time.

Australia's Jason Scrivener is fancied to go well 5

Hong Kong Open: Aussie to rule

Ben Coley tipped the 100/1 winner and 66/1 runner-up in Hong Kong last year, so don't miss his take on the 2018 renewal at Fanling.

Most Read

Marc Leishman with the CIMB Classic trophy1

World Cup of Golf: Team-by-team guide

Ben Coley profiles each and every team in this week's World Cup of Golf, including favourites Australia and England's Ryder Cup duo.

Jasper Cillessen celebrates2

Nations League review: Dutch delight

Holland scored twice in the last five minutes to snatch a dramatic 2-2 draw in Germany and qualify for next year's Nations League Finals at the expense of world champions France.

Nap Of The Day
3

Daily Nap: It's our Destiny

David Ord provides Tuesday's racing nap, next best and treble with the bet of the day running shortly after midday at Lingfield.

Might Bite4

Fehily in line for Might Bite ride

Noel Fehily will ride favourite Might Bite in Saturday's Betfair Chase if regular partner Nico de Boinville fails to recover from injury in time.

Australia's Jason Scrivener is fancied to go well 5

Hong Kong Open: Aussie to rule

Ben Coley tipped the 100/1 winner and 66/1 runner-up in Hong Kong last year, so don't miss his take on the 2018 renewal at Fanling.

Racing Tips

Nap Of The Day

Daily Nap: It's our Destiny

David Ord provides Tuesday's racing nap, next best and treble with the bet of the day running shortly after midday at Lingfield.

Check out our free horse racing selections and preview for today's action

Tuesday's racing preview

Bobby K is Anita Chambers' best bet at Lingfield and she has a tip for every race in the UK.

Royal Line (right) pulls clear to win the November Handicap

Sporting Life Tipping Record

A look at how the Sporting Life recommended bets have performed in November 2018.

Next Race Off

10:35 Vaal
9
(3)
Gimme The Fire
J: Craig Zackey
18
(15)
I Like To Move It
J: Reserve 2
16
(10)
Zillzaal
J: Lyle Hewitson

Football Tips

Royal Line (right) pulls clear to win the November Handicap

Sporting Life Tipping Record

A look at how the Sporting Life recommended bets have performed in November 2018.

We look ahead to the latest round of matches in the Nations League

Monday's Nations League preview

The Nations League continues on Monday with the Netherlands aiming to join the final four. Tom Carnduff has three best bets.

Get your bets on!

Our best bets

Check out all of our available betting tips and previews of the forthcoming sporting action.