Shanghai Masters - Xiao to face Ding in first all-Chinese ranking final

Xiao Guodong will face Ding Junhui in the Shanghai Masters final after the players overcame Michael Holt and Barry Hawkins in their respective semi-finals.

Shanghai Masters - Xiao to face Ding in first all-Chinese ranking final

View photo

Xiao Guodong (imago)

"I found more and more enjoyable moments in competition and I'm growing fast at the moment," said Xiao. 

"I managed to stay calm during the whole match. I think it's important to give all my attention to the match. I can achieve anything if I do so.

"I'm confident now and I'm going to lift the trophy tomorrow, whoever I'm going to play. This is what I've been desperate to do for years. It's not done if I lose. I have one more match to play, which will be my biggest stage in my career."

Xiao racked up breaks of 64 and 96 as he quickly took a 3-1 lead over Holt before the Brit stormed back with breaks of 113 and 64 to level at three frame a piece.

Xiao snuck out in front once more with a break of 111 before Holt was only able to secure one of the two snookers he needed in the eighth frame. Xiao then finished the match with a break of 127.

"I can't say I threw it away,” Holt said.

“I felt good but I didn't really have chances to get on top. I felt as if I was more comfortable and he was more nervous. But I couldn't get in front, and towards the end he potted some great balls.

 "I've got to take the positives out of this week but I'm disappointed because I thought I could have won it. I have proved that I can play out there."

In the days second semi-final Ding Junhui came through against Barry Hawkins by six frames to two.

In fairness it was a relatively straight forward victory for the world number 12 with Hawkins unable to match Ding's impressive form.

View comments (4)