Shaun Murphy holds a 5-3 advantage over Mark Selby after the first session of the Kreativ Dental German Masters final in Berlin.
Pic: Da Zhuang
Murphy won four frames in a row from 2-1 down to surge ahead, though Selby crucially nicked the last of the afternoon to boost his hopes of a fight-back in tonight’s concluding session. First to nine frames wins the title and 80,000 Euro top prize.
Murphy is chasing his sixth trophy of the past 12 months and back-to-back titles having won the recent Masters. He is also targeting the sixth ranking title of his career. Selby is hoping to win his fifth ranking crown and first since becoming World Champion last May.
The first frame of the final at the Tempodrom lasted 31 minutes and came down to the colours, Selby winning a safety battle on the green and clearing to the pink to win it. Murphy levelled with a break of 72 then Selby dominated the third with runs of 44 and 53 to regain the lead.
Murphy then took control with a superb display of break-building, runs of 130, 118 putting him 3-2 up. He added the sixth frame after laying a clever snooker on the green, then a break of 51 made it 5-2.
And Murphy built a 62-8 lead in the last of the session, but could not capitalise on chances to win the frame, and when he missed a long red, Selby stepped in with a cool 62 clearance to narrow the deficit. They resume at 8pm local time.