Day 7 Masters Snooker Extra


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Day 7

Hazel Irvine introduces highlights from the first semi-final.


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Hello. It is semifinals day here in the Daph best Masters. Our defending

:00:07.:00:41.

chavm, Ronnie O'Sullivan, in the semifinal, and still on a that ject

:00:42.:00:46.

write as the rocket -- trajectory as a Rocket that might take him to a

:00:47.:00:53.

record 7 victories. Now, it was Marco Fu who is facing them. This is

:00:54.:00:57.

a man who is arguably in the career form of his life! He'd made four

:00:58.:01:03.

centuries to get into this semifinal, and this promised to be

:01:04.:01:07.

the match-up of the day. It was watched by Stephen Hendry and Dennis

:01:08.:01:10.

Taylor. Can Marco start the match with a

:01:11.:01:32.

long pot? APPLAUSE

:01:33.:01:39.

He is OK. So he's got a couple of loose reds. He is on a clear. So, an

:01:40.:01:46.

early chance. Can he continue playing in the form that he showed

:01:47.:01:48.

us throughout the week, Stephen? Since the UK Championship, when he

:01:49.:02:00.

was - I think it was a green or the brown, with the rest away of beating

:02:01.:02:06.

Ronnie in the semifinal of that event, since then, I think he's had

:02:07.:02:13.

a couple of tweaks technically Might get a chance to see a slightly

:02:14.:02:17.

longer back swing than normal. He is starting to look the real deal when

:02:18.:02:21.

it comes to the biggens. I mean, he's always been a fantastic player.

:02:22.:02:25.

Everyone in snooker knows that, but he would sort of go maybe one or two

:02:26.:02:31.

months, you know, of playing well and then disappear. If he keeps

:02:32.:02:36.

playing like this he will be competing at every big event. A

:02:37.:02:43.

nice, aggressive shot. Might just be OK, you know. Caught the pink half

:02:44.:02:50.

ball, instead of fall ball. I think the white might cannon into the

:02:51.:02:56.

pink, which couldn't be a bad thing. It looks a natural... Well, he's

:02:57.:03:00.

taking - this is much more difficult, the one he is taking, to

:03:01.:03:12.

stay on the black. Oh. He didn't... CROWD:

:03:13.:03:13.

JEERING I thought he may have taken the

:03:14.:03:17.

other one which was an easier pot. Yeah. Aggressive red to take.

:03:18.:03:22.

Started off straight into the bunch straightaway. Maybe that's his plan

:03:23.:03:25.

- take the game to Ronnie. APPLAUSE

:03:26.:03:48.

That's a very good shot. The fact he's covered the red that's near the

:03:49.:03:53.

right corner. He had the yellow and the blue there to use as Snookering

:03:54.:04:00.

balls, and he played it well. Can particular # -- can Marco return the

:04:01.:04:06.

compliment? No. He's just playing dead weigh. But he still covered

:04:07.:04:08.

that red that's near the pocket. Nicely picked out there, but a bit

:04:09.:04:46.

of pressure on the next pot. He's certainly opened the reds up, if

:04:47.:04:48.

this blue goes in. A great chance. CROWD: Oh! A bit of pressure on that

:04:49.:04:55.

one early on in the match. Still expected Ronnie to knock that

:04:56.:05:07.

in. But it is the opening frame. This is a nice opportunity now for

:05:08.:05:48.

Marco Fu. Maybe just taking a few moments just to calm down. Such a

:05:49.:05:53.

massive entrance for both players at the semifinal. Important he plays at

:05:54.:05:59.

his own pace. Getting the blue back up on to its

:06:00.:06:16.

own spot will help the situation, because the pink's out of

:06:17.:06:26.

commission. Marco turned professional in 1997 and based

:06:27.:06:30.

himself in Scotland. Well, he was with your team at the time. Did you

:06:31.:06:33.

used to practice with him at Spencer's Club that is no longer

:06:34.:06:37.

there now in Stirling? Yeah. There was two or three professionals. Used

:06:38.:06:42.

to have some games with Marco. He's always been a big solo practiser.

:06:43.:06:50.

Doesn't practice a lot with other players. Used to have the odd game.

:06:51.:06:57.

He used to be... 3, 4, 5 frames and he would just never miss.

:06:58.:07:02.

Of course, he learned the game in Canada. He was based out there for a

:07:03.:07:08.

while. Goes without saying the red to the

:07:09.:07:25.

right of the black is the one he wants to move. Wants the black

:07:26.:07:30.

available to both corner pockets. A nice angle. The red directly above

:07:31.:07:35.

the black. He will want to cannon that. He will want to play it at a

:07:36.:07:39.

decent pace, because there's every chance he could snooker himself on

:07:40.:07:48.

the red to the right corner. Played it a little bit harder.

:07:49.:08:17.

I have just got a feeling today it will probably be a high-scoring

:08:18.:08:24.

match. So, chances like this, taking them at your first opportunity, I

:08:25.:08:28.

think, are going to be very important.

:08:29.:08:38.

O'Sullivan hasn't been in his best-scoring form this week, but you

:08:39.:08:45.

get the feeling it is going to come out sooner or later. I think it will

:08:46.:08:53.

have to today, Dennis, for him to meet Marco. Absolutely. And the fact

:08:54.:08:58.

he missed that medium-length blue. That is an early worrying sign.

:08:59.:09:04.

Because Marco's going to take full advantage. He's had to have two

:09:05.:09:10.

chances in this frame. He missed a red along the black cushion here.

:09:11.:09:18.

Had he knocked the long blue in, I am sure he would have gone on - this

:09:19.:09:23.

is the blue. Had he have potted that I'm sure he would have made a

:09:24.:09:28.

sizable break. Yeah. You mentioned, Dennis, the first frame. But

:09:29.:09:34.

normally we're used to seeing O'Sullivan start so quickly.

:09:35.:09:43.

So that black is the first frame. APPLAUSE

:09:44.:10:02.

Yeah. He's made 439 centuries in this career. That's terrific! 41

:10:03.:10:19.

centuries last season. APPLAUSE

:10:20.:10:25.

Already on 31 this season. APPLAUSE

:10:26.:10:54.

The kiss on the black's OK. Where we've had 20 centuries so far in

:10:55.:11:04.

this year's Masters. APPLAUSE

:11:05.:11:08.

I will tell you what - if you want to get a crowd on the side - this is

:11:09.:11:13.

the way you do it. Oh! He's missed it.

:11:14.:11:28.

CROWD: Oh! He's missed it. Unlucky! Almost a certain century. What a

:11:29.:11:32.

start for the man from Hong Kong. Ronnie missed that blue and that was

:11:33.:11:36.

tend of the frame -- that was the end of the frame. Marco Fu leads

:11:37.:11:39.

1-0. APPLAUSE

:11:40.:12:09.

It isn't a snooker. He can see the one to the left. If he takes this

:12:10.:12:13.

pot on - he will have to because there is no easy safety shot - we

:12:14.:12:18.

saw him miss a blue which cost him the opening frame. Can he knock this

:12:19.:12:24.

one in? CROWD: Oh! No! Marco Fu can punish

:12:25.:12:37.

Ronnie. He will still be thinking about that poor positional shot he

:12:38.:12:42.

played when it looked like he was going to make quite a big break.

:12:43.:12:45.

This wasn't easy. Early in the second frame, but this

:12:46.:13:08.

is a massive visit to the table for Marco Fu.

:13:09.:13:15.

Such a psychological game, snooker, at the top level. You can put one on

:13:16.:13:24.

your opponent early on... This is where he just ran a little

:13:25.:13:39.

bit too far. Very annoyed with himself. Yeah. I think he was trying

:13:40.:13:43.

to play the cannon on the red to the right. This is... Just didn't get

:13:44.:13:51.

the side. Just playing those little left-hand side, just cannon the red

:13:52.:13:55.

to the right there, as the cue ball goes past it. Very unlike

:13:56.:14:00.

O'Sullivan. He needs the black back on that spot

:14:01.:14:31.

in a couple of shots' time. The reason I say that is that red that's

:14:32.:14:36.

on the cushion, it will be a lot easier to get on to the black if it

:14:37.:14:41.

was sitting on its own spot. Yeah. Dennis, so important not to leave

:14:42.:14:48.

that red until last. Every chance you don't get on to it properly,

:14:49.:14:52.

then you have to play safe. So, I would be playing for it now. Screw

:14:53.:15:02.

off the side cushion. Well, he's not done... He can play now the thread

:15:03.:15:09.

he is playing now, finish high on the black and then play for the red

:15:10.:15:11.

on the cushion. Travelled too far. Nope, he's fine.

:15:12.:15:32.

So, this is a shot for the frame, Dennis, you feel. Just has to drop

:15:33.:15:36.

it in dead weight, and give the pocket a chance. We have seen a lot

:15:37.:15:43.

easier black than this. Wenbo had to knock O'Sullivan out of this year's

:15:44.:15:47.

Masters, and he just hit it a little too hard. But this is much tougher.

:15:48.:15:51.

So dead weight will give the pocket a chance. You have got the perfect

:15:52.:15:53.

picture there. No! No!

:15:54.:16:00.

CROWD: Oh! APPLAUSE

:16:01.:16:05.

Now, that is quite a big turning point so early on in this match.

:16:06.:16:15.

Provided Ronnie goes on and takes the frame.

:16:16.:16:23.

Just a little awkward with the pink sitting on the yellow spot. So, he

:16:24.:16:31.

might even play for the pink this time.

:16:32.:16:40.

A big opportunity missed, though, by Marco Fu.

:16:41.:16:48.

If you touch the cushion and you don't usually see any reaction from

:16:49.:16:56.

Marco, but he knew that was a big shot that he just missed there.

:16:57.:17:14.

Green, brown and blue will be enough.

:17:15.:17:23.

Yeah, what it's done, by Marco missing that opportunity, is it's

:17:24.:17:30.

given Ronnie O'Sullivan the chance to forget all about that frame,

:17:31.:17:34.

because he's won it. If Marco wins it... Then he still thinks about it.

:17:35.:17:42.

Quite a tense frame this second frame!

:17:43.:17:59.

APPLAUSE In the send Ronnie O'Sullivan - not

:18:00.:18:03.

surprised he is leaving the arena. Lost his cool. He got the chance and

:18:04.:18:06.

took it. It's been a fascinating start to

:18:07.:18:28.

this semifinal. Oh! What was that, Marco? A long way

:18:29.:18:35.

short. Well, maybe he can't see enough of

:18:36.:18:53.

the red that's just to the right of the black to cut it in. The other

:18:54.:18:57.

red's preventing that. The red the left side of the table

:18:58.:19:17.

is just a little awkward for the safety shot. You have to make sure

:19:18.:19:20.

you don't cannon into that on the way back down. That's why he's not

:19:21.:19:24.

coming off the side of the pack. He may attempt this, to get on to the

:19:25.:19:29.

black as a shot to nothing. Now, just a... Straightforward up and

:19:30.:19:38.

down safety shot. APPLAUSE

:19:39.:20:03.

An opportunity to drop the thread in for the black.

:20:04.:20:20.

That's Marco's daughter there. Isn't she beautiful?

:20:21.:20:32.

That's your daddy out there playing, and I think she's just seen herself

:20:33.:20:41.

on the screen. Yeah! LAUGHS

:20:42.:21:33.

Yeah, Marco smiling up at his family, but he has to get his mind

:21:34.:21:54.

on the job. Semifinal of the Masters, one frame each, against

:21:55.:21:57.

Ronnie O'Sullivan. APPLAUSE

:21:58.:22:06.

Little bit of a stalemate now that red has gone up the other end of the

:22:07.:22:16.

table. Not a lot for Ronnie to play, only just roll into the reds and we

:22:17.:22:20.

might - possibly - get a rerack. What has he spotted here? Just a gap

:22:21.:22:44.

to get him back to the cushion. APPLAUSE

:22:45.:22:45.

Played that well. Just take a few shots to resolve

:22:46.:23:07.

this situation. Yes. As long as the cue ball keeps

:23:08.:23:47.

getting up to the cushion, there isn't a lot you can do. If the cue

:23:48.:23:51.

ball is away from the cushion, you can play a more aggressive shot, you

:23:52.:23:56.

can open the reds up and bring the kaubl back. But even -- cue ball

:23:57.:23:59.

back. But even that, you are sometimes knocking the red into one

:24:00.:24:05.

of the middle pockets. So, it could be a while here.

:24:06.:24:18.

Enjoying this kind of snooker? Wasn't your favourite type of frame,

:24:19.:24:26.

this. Neither player will like this, but sometimes the run like that, and

:24:27.:24:31.

you get the balls up the other end of the table... But what does happen

:24:32.:24:39.

when a player gets in, there is going to be plenty of reds there to

:24:40.:24:44.

score from. Now, that one to the left-middle is quite a risky one,

:24:45.:24:58.

but... He's had a quick look at it, and he's decided definitely against

:24:59.:25:04.

taking it on. But that's a bit careless. He's made a complete hash

:25:05.:25:09.

of the safety there. OK. A little bit unluck I yes. You inform know

:25:10.:25:14.

where the reds are going to finish but he didn't get the white where he

:25:15.:25:19.

wanted. Now the chance is there for Marco.

:25:20.:25:24.

APPLAUSE Oh!

:25:25.:25:37.

Marco has just put himself in a bit of trouble here.

:25:38.:25:51.

Doon he might have to play a safety shot off the green and go off the

:25:52.:26:02.

black with the cue ball. One of the golden chances let slip there.

:26:03.:26:36.

APPLAUSE When you bring the cue ball back to

:26:37.:26:45.

the black cushion, there's always chances with middle pockets. Ronnie

:26:46.:26:49.

has done that with the last two shots now. Again here, no good

:26:50.:26:54.

afternoon tee where the -- guarantee where the cue ball will end up. Just

:26:55.:27:01.

make sure of the pot. He will settle for that.

:27:02.:27:15.

It isn't a gimmee, this blue, but there is pressure on it with the way

:27:16.:27:22.

the reds are situated. But get this in, and what an opportunity.

:27:23.:27:30.

APPLAUSE Didn't cue that smoothly as he was

:27:31.:27:38.

in the first frame. Popped it in the right-hand side of the pocket, and

:27:39.:27:41.

didn't get correctly on the red. That is why he is having to play

:27:42.:27:43.

this around the angles. Overscrewed it slightly. He wanted

:27:44.:28:32.

to be straighter on this brown. Shouldn't be a problem.

:28:33.:28:45.

He is going to have to pot an awful lot of balls here to get a sizable

:28:46.:28:57.

number of points. Because they're all low-value colours.

:28:58.:29:30.

He's had a look at that just to see what's available there. So, he's way

:29:31.:29:36.

ahead of himself. And he feels that maybe he can drop the blue and he's

:29:37.:29:41.

back looking at that red to the right of the pink. And it looks as

:29:42.:29:44.

if it's on. That just shows you far ahead the

:29:45.:30:03.

player's thinking. It is usually a couple of shots. Rarely more than

:30:04.:30:06.

three shots ahead, four shots. You are just playing the cue ball into

:30:07.:30:11.

an area each time, but you weigh up the table and you know that it's

:30:12.:30:15.

going to be there, and he had looked at this red about three shots ago.

:30:16.:30:25.

Didn't get into the kaubl # cue ball like -- cue ball like he wanted. He

:30:26.:30:40.

wanted to be much straighter on this blue. This is now awkward. He's

:30:41.:30:47.

playing a cannon on a red directly above the blue. It will go around,

:30:48.:30:59.

but he's had natural angle... So... A little bit fortunate to have that

:31:00.:31:02.

natural angle. They seem to be all covering each

:31:03.:31:26.

other, the four reds around the pink. He's potted seven reds, but

:31:27.:31:33.

he's only accumulated 34 points because he's had to take

:31:34.:31:37.

lower-valued colours. Just going slightly to the left side

:31:38.:32:05.

of the pocket, but he can make that. APPLAUSE

:32:06.:32:23.

I think it is important for Marco to win this frame now, just to forget

:32:24.:32:30.

that red that he missed along the cushion. That could have given him a

:32:31.:32:35.

2-0 lead. But he's always been blessed with a terrific temperament

:32:36.:32:38.

also. That was an awkward frame at the

:32:39.:32:58.

start with the reds going up the other end of the table. And then the

:32:59.:33:05.

end, Ronnie attempting to get back to the black. Well, he did do but he

:33:06.:33:16.

left one to the middle. It's the frame well and truly saved now.

:33:17.:33:19.

APPLAUSE Be of 11. The interval still after

:33:20.:33:27.

four frames. Yep, daddy's clearing up. That is

:33:28.:33:54.

his wife Shirley who is there with their daughter.

:33:55.:33:54.

APPLAUSE Almost made a century in the opening

:33:55.:34:00.

frame. He's got another chance here. I have noticed Ronnie is looking at

:34:01.:34:43.

the tip of his cue there. I know he... He made a gesture as if he was

:34:44.:34:48.

going to bite the tip off, but I think that was a bit of

:34:49.:35:04.

You would have to say from Marco Fu, this is great stuff. Yeah, he's

:35:05.:35:07.

looking very composed again. That's his fifth century. Absolutely

:35:08.:35:30.

terrific stuff from the man from Hong Kong and in he goes. Absolutely

:35:31.:35:41.

secure. This third frame. Marco leads and Ronnie has left the arena

:35:42.:35:46.

and I'm wondering if there's a slight problem with the tip. We'll

:35:47.:35:51.

find out shortly. How will he react to the new tip. If anyone can do it,

:35:52.:35:55.

Ronnie O'Sullivan can do it. He seems to be just able to get the tip

:35:56.:36:00.

on and not the sort of thing that the player would want but he's

:36:01.:36:08.

pretty good at doing it. The way that they make tips these days. 15

:36:09.:36:13.

or 20 years ago, it used to take me three or four days to knock a tip

:36:14.:36:18.

in. They seem to be able to make them a lot firmer. You can get

:36:19.:36:22.

grades of how firm the tip is and the last time that I had it last

:36:23.:36:26.

year, I was able to play with it straightaway. It is just the way

:36:27.:36:31.

that the tips are made now. Not quite the drama I think that

:36:32.:36:35.

everyone is making out. But still in a semifinal of a major event, not

:36:36.:36:51.

ideal. Meanwhile, Marco has made a terrific breakoff shot.

:36:52.:37:07.

It's not going to be hard enough. Coming up a little bit short so I

:37:08.:37:13.

suppose on that type of shot, difficult to judge at the best of

:37:14.:37:23.

times. Well, you would say, a a we bit of pressure on whoever put the

:37:24.:37:24.

tip on, wouldn't you. We thought that he would take the

:37:25.:37:44.

double on and he wouldn't leave anything. Only the red that he was

:37:45.:37:49.

trying to double and he has left it. So a little bit of a tester, a long

:37:50.:37:53.

pot. Let's see if he can knock this in and give himself a little bit of

:37:54.:38:00.

confidence in that new tip. APPLAUSE

:38:01.:38:14.

Judging by the sounds that made, it's a little bit on softer side.

:38:15.:38:41.

Coming up a little bit short but can still play the cannon. Yes, as if he

:38:42.:38:51.

wasn't happy with the tip that was on it and you now he finds a tip

:38:52.:38:57.

that he is happy with, we can see a different Ronnie O'Sullivan. That

:38:58.:39:03.

could give him a massive boost of confidence.

:39:04.:39:13.

Just about OK. He can hold for the red that's up to the right of the

:39:14.:39:19.

blue here. Well, surely, he can't make a frame

:39:20.:40:15.

when he went with the brand new cue. You wouldn't put it past him.

:40:16.:40:58.

Well, that got a terrible contact there. He's still on the black but

:40:59.:41:04.

not as nicely as he would have been without the kick. Just watch this.

:41:05.:41:40.

He certainly looks a lot happier around the table? Yes, there's no

:41:41.:41:46.

doubt that he's more comfortable there than the one that was on

:41:47.:41:58.

previously. He did mention in the studio after the last match that was

:41:59.:42:03.

very hard on his cue. So that was a tiny little bit softer and it just

:42:04.:42:08.

gives you more feel. Perhaps that's why a couple of the positional shots

:42:09.:42:22.

have been going array. He looks a different player.

:42:23.:42:56.

Quite remarkable, it has to be said. Going a little bit too far here on

:42:57.:43:01.

the red. But you wouldn't see it being a problem.

:43:02.:43:09.

He's only made one century so far this this year's Masters.

:43:10.:43:23.

S not going to be easy to make a century. Certainly with the left on

:43:24.:43:34.

the side cushion. And this frame has only been going

:43:35.:43:42.

just over seven minutes. Everything is going in!

:43:43.:43:52.

I don't know if you can square this up and play the double. No double,

:43:53.:44:02.

no century but I'll tell you what, with a brand new tip on the cue,

:44:03.:44:07.

he's come out and knocked in a 95 with it. Absolutely incredible.

:44:08.:44:08.

We're all square - two frames each. That's a pretty good break off as

:44:09.:44:33.

well. Can't really take this pot on and play for the black. It's just

:44:34.:44:45.

the wrong angle for that. Didn't manage to get around the back. Good

:44:46.:44:51.

cue ball. There are the tools of the trade

:44:52.:45:04.

from the snooker player but not sure about the lighter - what he's going

:45:05.:45:09.

to do with that? Maybe burn a few of the fibres off. He was polishing the

:45:10.:45:14.

side of the tip so that you don't see it when you're looking down the

:45:15.:45:16.

cue. He may have just held for the pink

:45:17.:46:08.

there. OK, the red is near the pocket but look at the cueing. He

:46:09.:46:12.

won't be potting that one, you wouldn't think. But he has to remove

:46:13.:46:17.

it from the pocket. But if he bridges over all these reds and

:46:18.:46:22.

knocks this in, it will be some shot.

:46:23.:46:39.

Very tough situation there. He might just have gotten away with it

:46:40.:47:05.

slightly. Wanted to hit it full ball when he hit the cushion. It is a

:47:06.:47:10.

long one and he can get on the black.

:47:11.:47:51.

So a chance for Marco to get back to work. Obviously he's had that

:47:52.:48:01.

interval after the third frame, which wasn't planned. When Ronnie

:48:02.:48:06.

won the last one on the visit so we'll see if that's interrupted

:48:07.:48:08.

Marco's rhythm. This has developed into quite a good

:48:09.:48:52.

opportunity for him here. Just over screwed it slightly. Wanted to be

:48:53.:49:02.

straighter on that red. Closer to the pink so it was a change of plan.

:49:03.:49:20.

It's OK with the cue ball there. He's got a choice of reds for the

:49:21.:49:57.

left corner. I think we said at the start of the match, there were quite

:49:58.:50:02.

a few high breaks here. I think that the prediction is going to come

:50:03.:50:06.

through because he's had an 9 in the opening frame, 110 in frame three.

:50:07.:50:13.

And a 95 in the previous frames. So it's building up very nicely, this

:50:14.:50:15.

semifinal. It could be a cracker. Just an inch too short. May have to

:50:16.:50:51.

play there and when you see it playing to the left of the two. I

:50:52.:50:55.

don't know if he's straight on the bottom one to fall through for the

:50:56.:50:57.

black. I think it looks like it's OK. Just

:50:58.:51:15.

a bit more face to make sure that he follows through. And again, a couple

:51:16.:51:19.

of inches further. So he's going to have to cannon that red and that's

:51:20.:51:34.

there to the end of the bunch. Perfectly played.

:51:35.:51:39.

That was the key shot to paving the way to making a frame-winning break

:51:40.:51:40.

here. And he's judged a couple of the

:51:41.:52:24.

shots on the cannons. He's played them perfectly, hasn't he? Yeah,

:52:25.:52:32.

lovely touch. Very economical. He's starting to look like a machine when

:52:33.:52:42.

he gets in a the balls. -- gets in amongst the balls.

:52:43.:53:17.

He's in line for the high break Masters here. He's in line for 140.

:53:18.:53:25.

He's had five centuries so far this week.

:53:26.:53:32.

I think that he made 11 or 12 in winning the Scottish Open just

:53:33.:53:37.

before Christmas. He's turning into a scoring machine.

:53:38.:53:48.

That's the biggest attribute that you can have as a top snooker to be

:53:49.:53:53.

able to win frames in one visit like this on a regular basis.

:53:54.:54:03.

And from a psychological point of view, after watching Ronnie win the

:54:04.:54:07.

last frame with a 95 break and a new tip, this is just what the doctor

:54:08.:54:15.

ordered for Marco Fu. And also, how quickly is he playing! It helps when

:54:16.:54:20.

you're in perfect position every shot. Brilliant! Absolutely superb

:54:21.:54:32.

from Marco Fu. It's the 22nd century so far this week.

:54:33.:54:55.

It's not often there's a quicker shot time than Ronnie O'Sullivan.

:54:56.:55:00.

But again, down to the fact that he's got the cue ball on the string.

:55:01.:55:04.

It's not down to the coach, that's for sure. Well, his coach is Wayne

:55:05.:55:10.

Griffith but originally he was with Terry Griffith so he didn't get that

:55:11.:55:24.

16-shot selection from Terry. He could beat his own high break by one

:55:25.:55:27.

point. What an effort. Zbler made absolutely sure of the

:55:28.:55:48.

black. What a response from Marco Fu. He quietly gets the balls out of

:55:49.:55:52.

the pocket but he's just cleared the table with a magnificent break of

:55:53.:55:57.

141. And he's back in the lead at 3-2.

:55:58.:56:43.

Quality opening here with Ronnie O'Sullivan. Has to aim down slightly

:56:44.:56:49.

from the cue ball to create that angle to get around the back of the

:56:50.:56:51.

black. He enjoyed trying to get the better

:56:52.:57:07.

of it. He would enjoy it. Sitting in the

:57:08.:57:24.

chair to... He will have appreciated the skill of it.

:57:25.:57:52.

The match with Judd Trump was extraordinary but this is building

:57:53.:58:01.

up to an extraordinary match. Judd had two high Septemberuries but

:58:02.:58:06.

Marco was awesome. -- centuries but Marco was awesome with three

:58:07.:58:09.

centuries in that match. He's already had two in this. But Ronnie

:58:10.:58:14.

looks a different player, it has to be said. And he certainly feels

:58:15.:58:20.

comfortable with this new tip. Tough bunch of reds to go into from

:58:21.:58:57.

this angle but he's one of the best in the business at picking out the

:58:58.:59:03.

right cannon. It's so easy to stick on these. When you see that and it

:59:04.:59:13.

just goes absolutely perfectly. He needs to hit the red, the third red

:59:14.:59:17.

on the right-hand side of that red and push it is into the bunch. He

:59:18.:59:27.

could not hit that any better. That one, it has to hit on the right-hand

:59:28.:59:32.

side side of it. Any other red and it won't work. Fantastic shot.

:59:33.:59:46.

I tell you what, it's an absolute pleasure to be sitting and

:59:47.:59:51.

commentating on this kind of match. It really is fabulous to watch. Look

:59:52.:59:54.

at the pot success rate. Apart from he like he loves this new

:59:55.:00:19.

tip on the cue, but like I said already, he'll be enjoying this

:00:20.:00:22.

challenge that's up against him today. Playing the man at the top of

:00:23.:00:26.

his form as Marco Fu is. These frames are not lasting very

:00:27.:00:41.

long, are they? That's the frame safe. Now, full

:00:42.:01:05.

concentration to see if he can respond with a century break. You

:01:06.:01:16.

can't beat the high break, that's for certain. But even if he doesn't

:01:17.:01:21.

make a century, it doesn't really matter. But, great response this.

:01:22.:01:35.

Marco can't do anything about it. And this Alexandra Palace crowd are

:01:36.:01:37.

being royally entertained here. Might be able to pot the red closest

:01:38.:02:01.

to the black. If not, the cannon. No, it will go.

:02:02.:02:16.

Well, this is stunning, absolutely stunning snooker.

:02:17.:02:39.

In between the yellow and brown. That's another century. Ronnie's

:02:40.:02:50.

first of the match. And he's made 858 centuries now in

:02:51.:03:07.

his career. And who's going to bet against him getting to that magical

:03:08.:03:12.

1,000 centuries. Wouldn't that be something in a career!

:03:13.:03:42.

Oh, it doesn't matter that the black hasn't gone in. What a response from

:03:43.:03:48.

Ronnie O'Sullivan. Marco Fu made a magnificent break of 141. The

:03:49.:03:53.

response was - that superb century, 122. We're all square - three frames

:03:54.:03:56.

each. I can't wait for more of this. Now, how much quicker can the two

:03:57.:04:31.

players get. Just equalled Marco down to 16 seconds a shot. Oh, Marco

:04:32.:04:36.

played that red thinking that it was the only one that could lead. And

:04:37.:04:39.

how often does that happen? Now, one red, one black, Dennis.

:04:40.:04:59.

What do you think? You are naughty, Stephen!

:05:00.:05:32.

For a practice for exhibition, you brush off there for the black. He

:05:33.:05:39.

can still play it for this shot. Yes, he has done.

:05:40.:06:28.

Concentrating on the frame. Yeah, the crowd were buzzing there but

:06:29.:06:38.

Ronnie... Even Marco was smiling. Ronnie, as all players, the main

:06:39.:06:42.

concern is the frame. But that's nice to see. Of course, he made that

:06:43.:06:52.

magical maximum break on 13 occasions, just did that. 12 you

:06:53.:06:54.

made. Never been in front this this

:06:55.:07:17.

semifinal. Would be a good time to take the lead.

:07:18.:07:34.

Well, we didn't see that coming. It was just a little bit of a

:07:35.:07:40.

distraction from the red there having to bridge over it that caused

:07:41.:07:45.

him to miss that. That's the only reason. That I can think of why he

:07:46.:07:50.

missed the black. And there's the red to the right of

:07:51.:08:14.

the bunch that goes to the right of the corner. But it's a big corner if

:08:15.:08:19.

you want to go into it and really open things up. He's going to go for

:08:20.:08:21.

the red first. Another big moment in this match. So

:08:22.:08:59.

often, the deciding factor in these matches are not the frames that you

:09:00.:09:03.

should win, it's the frames that you shouldn't. The ones that you can

:09:04.:09:06.

pinch. Such a fine line between winning and losing when both players

:09:07.:09:12.

are playing so well. He's just finished a little awkward. He took

:09:13.:09:17.

the opportunity to open more of the reds up there and just having to

:09:18.:09:20.

stretch quite a bit here. A little straighter on the black

:09:21.:09:35.

than he would have liked, but that shouldn't be a problem.

:09:36.:09:42.

Let's see him pot this red. This clears everything. No excuses, now.

:09:43.:10:42.

He doesn't want to be playing a cannon, because they are all

:10:43.:10:45.

available. Rather than forcing me in, he

:10:46.:11:08.

displayed a nice little shot to leave that one next to the pink in

:11:09.:11:10.

the middle. 39. This would be quite a frame to pinch

:11:11.:11:31.

for Marco Fu, here. Ronnie O'Sullivan is shaking his head. He

:11:32.:11:37.

knows that this standard, he cannot afford any mistakes.

:11:38.:11:45.

We showed you the shot that Ronnie O'Sullivan nest because he was

:11:46.:11:52.

bridging of the red, it was a little awkward. This was the one.

:11:53.:12:05.

You don't see him shake his head often, but he knows that Marco Fu is

:12:06.:12:18.

not going to miss. He is thinking very clearly at the moment, Marco

:12:19.:12:20.

Fu. Just a little bit harder than he

:12:21.:12:37.

intended. 56. Yes, he's hoping for the top spin, and just as the angle

:12:38.:12:41.

to get over it. 58. 65. Just the blue to make absolutely

:12:42.:12:50.

certain. And it is straightforward. He just can't make a mistake in this

:12:51.:13:40.

game, the way these boys are playing. Another fabulous frame of

:13:41.:13:49.

snooker. Ronnie O'Sullivan had the 47 break, a little awkward, misty

:13:50.:13:54.

black, and that was the end of it. Marco Fu, without break of 83, is

:13:55.:14:02.

back in the lead again 4-3. -- missed the black.

:14:03.:14:20.

Both players are getting the breaks to perfection, get close to the

:14:21.:14:26.

question, which means that the red is normally either side, a difficult

:14:27.:14:31.

pot if you are a way from the question it is easier. -- if you are

:14:32.:14:35.

away from the cushion. It looks quite a thin snick, this.

:14:36.:14:51.

But maybe he is OK. A little bit too pacey, so he is

:14:52.:15:11.

restricted now with what he can do with the cue ball. The red is still

:15:12.:15:14.

left of the bunch. A bit of movement in his body there,

:15:15.:15:42.

on that shot. That was in his normal smooth playing style.

:15:43.:15:51.

Just a little bit of movement, that time, but he normally does that. But

:15:52.:16:53.

the fact that he was tight on the cushion, almost, made that slightly

:16:54.:17:00.

more difficult. Finishing short on this thread, so more reds can be

:17:01.:17:10.

brought into play when putting this. -- potting. Just a similar black to

:17:11.:17:31.

the previous frame, but he was bridging over a red, that time.

:17:32.:17:47.

Just managed to avoid eating that red Devils that could have spoiled

:17:48.:18:39.

things, but he judged it to perfection.

:18:40.:18:52.

-- Just managed to avoid hitting that red ball -

:18:53.:18:55.

things, but he judged it to perfection.

:18:56.:19:05.

When he is this red, he wants the cue to keep going through. -- hits.

:19:06.:19:23.

He will need some special here. We saw what happened in the previous

:19:24.:19:27.

frame. He got a 47 break, and it was not enough. This is a very tough...

:19:28.:19:31.

Oh, what a shot! 47. Just red to get it through the gap.

:19:32.:19:52.

He was listed finish low on this red. 54.

:19:53.:19:59.

So a good positional shot required, here.

:20:00.:20:36.

55. Just didn't quite judge it. When you are counting on the reds, there

:20:37.:20:48.

is always a possibility you can finish on the cushion. Shouldn't be

:20:49.:20:59.

a problem covering that red that is over on the left, on the right

:21:00.:21:07.

corner pocket. Just to make sure, he locks the pass through to that.

:21:08.:21:15.

Anthony brown near the cushion is a little bit of insurance. -- and the

:21:16.:21:26.

brown. It is a healthy lead, 54 points, but not the man in the form

:21:27.:21:44.

that Marco Fu is. When you get a chance, and he has a little bit to

:21:45.:21:47.

think about, here... Very clever indeed! Acknowledged by

:21:48.:22:09.

Ronnie O'Sullivan tapping on the table. OK, there is a possible red,

:22:10.:22:13.

there. -- pottable. Didn't want the cannon on the

:22:14.:22:54.

ground. -- round. But that shot that Marco Fu just played... Now,

:22:55.:23:03.

brilliant shot! He should miss that red. Just

:23:04.:23:17.

floated it in. Everything is coming very easily will stop the complete

:23:18.:23:24.

his cue ball down for the black, possibly not leaving Ronnie

:23:25.:23:28.

O'Sullivan anything as easy. Taking the difficult red, first.

:23:29.:23:38.

Decent! He chose to take the most difficult red.

:23:39.:23:48.

That is what happens when you decelerate. They could have been a

:23:49.:24:01.

huge turning point, had he had pinched that frame after pinching

:24:02.:24:03.

the previous one. They are just so evenly matched,

:24:04.:24:46.

now, in this semi-final. That was the first small sign of weakness

:24:47.:24:50.

-- we've seen from Marco Fu in a long time in this match.

:24:51.:25:04.

12. He would have been a strong favourite had he taken the frame,

:25:05.:25:16.

but you just sensed this could go to a deciding frame. We've had some

:25:17.:25:20.

fabulous matches all week, and quite a few of them going the distance.

:25:21.:25:33.

Yes, an average frame time of under 12 minutes. That just shows you the

:25:34.:25:51.

quality of snooker. 41. He had the nerve to make a 55! He

:25:52.:26:45.

finished the frame off with a break of 63. Marco Fu did have a chance,

:26:46.:26:51.

missed that red, and we are back square again. 4-4.

:26:52.:27:08.

Once again, a good pace with the break off shot. If he has a slight

:27:09.:27:17.

angle on this red, he might just be tempted, because he could drop on

:27:18.:27:25.

the black and the only thing he could possibly leave would be the

:27:26.:27:32.

red. But now that it is down to the best of three...

:27:33.:27:41.

Just decided against risking that. The crowd have been fabulous

:27:42.:27:54.

throughout this match. We just don't need the single one shouting out at

:27:55.:27:57.

the wrong time. It is bolstered for both players.

:27:58.:28:07.

-- it spoils it. Hopefully he can bring patent black into play as

:28:08.:28:15.

well. -- bring that black. That was a risky one just to nestle

:28:16.:29:03.

them their. You are trusting that the table will run perfectly true.

:29:04.:29:08.

With the knack of the cloth, it can get a little deviation. Yes, it was

:29:09.:29:19.

the first negative shot that Marco Fu has played in a long time. He

:29:20.:29:23.

brought the cue ball back to where it was, at the table. In the Bisley

:29:24.:29:29.

thought that was the easy one to play. -- but he obviously thought. I

:29:30.:29:37.

think there is someone in the front row who is moving around, having a

:29:38.:29:41.

drink, and probably brought some water in with them.

:29:42.:29:56.

It is not that difficult a shot to take the cue ball back up to where

:29:57.:30:03.

he was playing from, so as I said, not the way he has been playing so

:30:04.:30:05.

far this afternoon, that shot. I am just wondering if that missed

:30:06.:30:22.

red in the last frame is affecting him. 70. This was the one that, if

:30:23.:30:32.

it goes in, you can see him dropping the cue. It was a great chance.

:30:33.:30:37.

Meanwhile, he knows that Ronnie O'Sullivan has not finished on the

:30:38.:30:41.

red as nicely as he would have liked, and it is all about the

:30:42.:30:47.

cannon, here, when he has the black. Can he avoid that? He could, and

:30:48.:30:54.

left-handed, as well! I mean, to get that sort of action

:30:55.:31:04.

on the cue ball with your opposite hand, to avoid canyoning the black,

:31:05.:31:07.

was excellent. -- cannoning. Since the interval, and we had the

:31:08.:31:49.

end of it after three frames, that new chip on the cue, that had breaks

:31:50.:32:00.

of 95, 122, 47, 55, and 62 in the previous frame. And Marco has had

:32:01.:32:03.

breaks of 141 and 83. 39. He has gone too far. 46. A big smile

:32:04.:32:38.

on, but about six inches farther than he expected. Ronnie O'Sullivan,

:32:39.:32:47.

46. This was the one that he just

:32:48.:33:01.

misjudged slightly. He knew straightaway that he hit it too

:33:02.:33:03.

hard. I think it can see enough of the

:33:04.:33:36.

red, but the brown is quite a destruction. A very awkward cue

:33:37.:33:44.

along this side of the brown, there. -- is quite a distraction.

:33:45.:34:18.

Managed to cover that red. It was a tricky situation he was faced with,

:34:19.:34:24.

there. There is Nick Van there. His dad to

:34:25.:35:16.

the side of them. -- Nick "Peanut" Baines. Keyboard layout with the

:35:17.:35:26.

Kaiser Chiefs. -- play out. Loves his snooker.

:35:27.:35:34.

-- Keyboard player with the Kaiser Chiefs.

:35:35.:35:40.

If that red kids running, it is safe, all relatively safe. He got

:35:41.:35:46.

away with that one. There is only one pottable red, the one that is

:35:47.:35:56.

just between the pink and black. That is the only possible red he

:35:57.:36:06.

could pot. But he might cannon into other reds, so it is very difficult.

:36:07.:36:13.

This is a safety shot. Don't blame him.

:36:14.:36:41.

We have had everything in this match, only bouts of safety, and now

:36:42.:36:46.

we're getting that. Just been a of breaks. Nice to see the tactical

:36:47.:36:50.

side of the game, also. Oh! One. He got a good cue ball, but

:36:51.:37:07.

if it get tighter behind the cover, he could be in a good advantage. We

:37:08.:37:09.

wish you this -- we will show you this foot plant.

:37:10.:37:16.

Oh, that cue ball ran off. It only -- it only moved the space of about

:37:17.:37:32.

a foot. That is shocking. Well, there is nothing Marco Fu

:37:33.:37:49.

could have done about that. Sometimes you get it along the ball

:37:50.:37:58.

line. But instead of being snookered, if these gringos in, it

:37:59.:38:03.

could be the end of frame. But it is not easy.

:38:04.:38:09.

-- green goes. A fabulous pot. Lucy Wood he is leading. Should have

:38:10.:38:25.

missed it. -- you see what he is leaving.

:38:26.:38:33.

What a difference that would have made, though, Denis. Tight behind

:38:34.:38:48.

that round ball. -- brown. It is a little bit awkward here for the good

:38:49.:38:53.

positional shot. He cannot make his mind up.

:38:54.:39:04.

Sometimes you are faced with a shot and you know it is just not a matter

:39:05.:39:12.

of potting the ball and getting a nice colour... Still can't decide

:39:13.:39:17.

which way to play it. In the end, he made it look very

:39:18.:39:40.

easy. Very delicate screw shot. Puff of the cheeks. Good to get that one

:39:41.:39:48.

out of the way. Very unfortunate for Marco Fu. OK, he was a long way

:39:49.:39:57.

behind, but had the have got the snooker, which you normally would

:39:58.:40:00.

have done without the ball drifting, as we show you again, and suddenly

:40:01.:40:11.

things are just going in Ronnie's favour. He has played fantastic

:40:12.:40:18.

stuff. I think that turning point in the previous round when Marco missed

:40:19.:40:24.

the one with the rest, that would have given him a 5-3 lead if he

:40:25.:40:35.

pinched that frame. The enormity of the occasion got to him. He had the

:40:36.:40:42.

opportunity to be 5-3 ahead. He won the previous frame with

:40:43.:41:29.

breaks of 55 and 63. This is following a similar pattern. Breaks

:41:30.:41:34.

of 46 and now this. What a shock that was! Using the jaw

:41:35.:42:36.

to get under the pink. You don't see that very often. -- shot that was.

:42:37.:42:46.

You don't see that shot played very often. And the black is in as well.

:42:47.:42:53.

So we have a break of 46. Followed up with a break of 82. The Rocket

:42:54.:42:59.

really has lifted off, now he is one frame away from a place in the

:43:00.:43:01.

final. It is 5-4. Once again, could break of shot.

:43:02.:43:22.

Both players raking very well. Finding that cushion, leaving short

:43:23.:43:28.

of a half chance. But because the white is so close to the cushion, it

:43:29.:43:35.

makes it very difficult. -- good break off the shot. Both players

:43:36.:43:43.

breaking very well. You can see if he misses it, he would have to be

:43:44.:43:51.

leaving Marco Fu a chance. Aiming the tip of history there. Looks like

:43:52.:43:55.

he going to leave the cue ball on the top cushion. The tip of the cue.

:43:56.:44:08.

Or is he taking the pot on. Fantastic. Always looked like a

:44:09.:44:14.

natural angle for the cue ball to go. Tremendous pot. He almost went

:44:15.:44:25.

off the side of the pack and finished on the black. He may have

:44:26.:44:48.

left a red to the right of the pocket the way he played. I think it

:44:49.:44:53.

was plain to lend on that red. -- planning to land on the red. No easy

:44:54.:45:02.

colour available if he takes it on. Quite clever really. It will take

:45:03.:45:09.

some shot from Marco to get on the black. An element of safety as well.

:45:10.:45:16.

You can see where the cue ball is. That is a little bit on both excite

:45:17.:46:57.

but I think the pace of the table will take the side of the yellow. He

:46:58.:47:03.

would have been trying to get the cue ball tight on the cushion, but

:47:04.:47:09.

that will do very nicely. That is all he can see. No easy way

:47:10.:47:32.

back to the safety zone from that position. That was all he could do

:47:33.:47:40.

there. I think this crowd have taken the

:47:41.:47:59.

Marco Fu. I think the snooker he has produced this week has been

:48:00.:48:03.

scintillating, especially against Trump. If you knock the ball seemed

:48:04.:48:10.

and you play great snooker you will get the support of the crowd. Just

:48:11.:48:14.

look at that crowd. What an atmosphere these two players have

:48:15.:48:26.

had this afternoon. 2000 people. Noise when it is needed, silence

:48:27.:48:30.

with the player at the table. Where is the cue ball going? It is

:48:31.:49:18.

OK. Have a look at the raids! That is what you call an attacking safety

:49:19.:49:20.

shot. -- red Certainly no easy escape back to the

:49:21.:49:48.

table from that position. Have to be very accurate indeed. If he left the

:49:49.:50:01.

white tight on the cushion to the left of the black a to cover the

:50:02.:50:07.

red, on for the right corner. But he has thought of quite a few options.

:50:08.:50:20.

Not often Ronnie thinks about the shot this length of time, but very

:50:21.:50:26.

understandable here. It was worth waiting on! I said he

:50:27.:51:03.

will do well to find a path down the table. He did, and he is on the

:51:04.:51:09.

brown to get back on the reds. That is the shot, probably, of the

:51:10.:51:16.

tournament. The pot that and find the gap.

:51:17.:51:31.

To pot that. Talking about the whole tournament, it could have been so

:51:32.:51:43.

different if Adam had potted that black in the first round. This man

:51:44.:51:49.

at the table was within a black ball of being knocked out. Now it is odds

:51:50.:51:56.

on to be making tomorrow's final. Going for a record seventh Masters

:51:57.:52:04.

final two overtake Stephen's six Masters.

:52:05.:52:12.

Still at 97%. Someone in his line of sight there.

:52:13.:52:35.

He is doing the right thing. Just settling himself. He knows the

:52:36.:52:46.

importance of this visit. He is really fired up here.

:52:47.:53:36.

He has just asked someone to keep still. It must be a photographer.

:53:37.:54:17.

Marco Fu just has to sit there and hope that something can go wrong for

:54:18.:54:24.

Ronnie. But he looks very focused does Ronnie O'Sullivan.

:54:25.:55:17.

It has been an absolutely fabulous semi-final match between two players

:55:18.:55:31.

at the top of the form. Very few mistakes being made. Just the odd

:55:32.:55:40.

error that was costly because of the way either player are playing. A

:55:41.:55:52.

little bit of misfortune with that ball rolling off that he was going

:55:53.:55:53.

to put behind the brown. I don't think I have ever seen

:55:54.:56:12.

Ronnie O'Sullivan as animated as he is today. Every shot is a different

:56:13.:56:18.

facial expression. The will to win is ferocious at the moment to get

:56:19.:56:20.

into that final. This is going to finish a little

:56:21.:56:47.

awkward. 51 in front, not many pots away from securing a place in the

:56:48.:56:50.

final. It is the! -- there! LAUGHTER is going to play

:56:51.:57:20.

left-handed if he can reach. Why not? Just needs the pink!

:57:21.:57:37.

APPLAUSE. That is a lovely gesture from Marco Fu. It has been a

:57:38.:57:50.

fabulous semi-final, as I mentioned. We set Marco Fu would have to play

:57:51.:57:54.

at the top of his game. He did that, he is still applauding. That is the

:57:55.:58:00.

type of character he is. But they have treated this Alexandra Palace

:58:01.:58:06.

audience to some brilliant, brilliant snooker. Doesn't matter

:58:07.:58:13.

about the red. Marco comes forward, Weeks Malla and congratulations for

:58:14.:58:16.

Ronnie O'Sullivan. Lovely to see both players. Fabulous semi-final.

:58:17.:58:22.

In the end, Ronnie O'Sullivan, he was just brilliant. He goes on to

:58:23.:58:31.

beat Marco Fu by six frames to four. He is in the final.

:58:32.:58:36.

In the end it was tipped Gate in Frank three which turned the tide

:58:37.:58:43.

for a O'Sullivan. He is into his 12th Masters final in 23 attempts.

:58:44.:58:48.

He goes for the outright record of seven victories. We will be on air

:58:49.:58:53.

to see how this all starts at one o'clock. I am sure you will join us.

:58:54.:58:58.

20th of January, the day of the inauguration of Donald Trump

:58:59.:59:04.

Do you reckon he'll invite the North Korean guy over?

:59:05.:59:07.