Brecel Scores Crucial Win
Belgian number one Luca Brecel took a huge step towards progressing to the Duelbits Tour Championship, after an entertaining 6-4 win over Jack Lisowski at the Duelbits Players Championship in Wolverhampton.
Brecel captured his third ranking title earlier in the campaign with victory at the Championship League. He was also runner-up to Mark Selby at the English Open, but is yet to confirm his qualification for the elite Tour Championship.
Only the top eight players on this season’s one-year list can make it to the series finale in Hull next month. Shaun Murphy’s first round win over Selby yesterday had seen him leapfrog Brecel into 8th position. However, today’s win for Brecel sees him move back in front.
Defeat for Lisowski leaves his Tour Championship hopes hanging by a thread. The six-time ranking event finalist now slips to 10th position on the live one-year list and only a deep run in the WST Classic can give him a chance of clinching a top eight spot.
Brecel made a fine break of 99 to take the opener this afternoon, before Lisowski responded by taking the next two and lead 2-1. However, they went into the mid-session level after Brecel fired in a run of 83 in the fourth.
When play got back underway Lisowski regained the lead thanks to a contribution of 85. Brecel did level up, but a century run of 104 from 31-year-old Lisowski saw him move ahead again at 4-3.
From there it was Brecel who charged to the line. Breaks of 78 and 58 saw him move 5-4 ahead, before a dramatic 10th frame. Lisowski had a chance to force a decider, but missed a straightforward red to the middle on 49. He lost the initiative in the frame and Brecel got himself over the line a 6-4 victor. He now faces a quarter-final with Joe O’Connor.
“We both wanted to win to get into the Tour Championship, so it was quite an important game. I am happy with how the game went,” said 27-year-old Brecel.
“It helps fighting for the Tour Championship and having something to play for, if you can handle it. I am going to be quite motivated tomorrow. I will enjoy it as well. This is a big tournament and everyone wants to do well here.
“Some people say it is all about winning but I don’t think so. There is more to it than that. If you watch football and see Messi and Ronaldo play it is different. People want to see entertaining football. If you have nice pots and nice breaks, that is the game me and Jack play. That is good for the crowd. It is what people expected before the game and we delivered.”
On the other table, Scottish Open champion Gary Wilson secured an impressive 6-3 win over 14-time ranking event winner Ding Junhui.
Wilson is also battling for a Tour Championship berth and today’s result keeps his hopes alive. The Wallsend cueman now faces Kyren Wilson in the last eight.
Wilson composed breaks of 61, 88 and 115 on his way to this afternoon’s victory and play’s his namesake in the last eight on Friday at 1pm.