Mark Selby put on an imperious display to sweep David Gilbert aside 6-1 and reach the 19.com Scottish Open final in Glasgow.
The match charted a similar course to Selby and Gilbert’s recent meeting in the 19.com English Open final. On that occasion three-time World Champion Selby missed just seven balls in blitzing to a 9-1 win. The Jester from Leicester is now one match away from becoming the first player to win two Home Nations titles in a season.
Gilbert’s wait for a maiden ranking title will now be prolonged. The 38-year-old Tamworth cueman has reached six ranking semi-finals, including four finals, but is yet to secure his first silverware.
Selby will now face the winner of tonight’s second semi-final between defending Mark Allen and Jack Lisowski. The victor in Sunday’s best of 17 final will pick up £70,000 and the Stephen Hendry Trophy.
This afternoon’s encounter got off to a sluggish start, with both Selby and Gilbert struggling to get out of the blocks. However, it was Selby who established a 2-0 lead. The players then both requested a change of cue ball and from there it was 36-year-old Selby who took complete control
Breaks of 76 and 84 helped Selby into a 4-0 lead at the mid-session interval. Contributions of 64 and 66 saw Gilbert get a frame on the board when they returned. However, Selby surged to the line with a break of 132, followed up by 69 to emerge a 6-1 winner.
Selby said: “He is a great lad and a great player. We have practised together a lot over the last few seasons. I know what he is capable of. I was always on my guard out there. I tried to keep it tight and not give him too many chances as he could easily have done what I did to him to me.
“It would be fantastic to win here. I have the Steve Davis Trophy at home and if I win tomorrow I will add the Stephen Hendry Trophy. I have a tough test whether I am against Mark or against Jack. I just have to rest up and go again.”
Gilbert said: “I didn’t expect anything from this week. However, after beating Judd Trump 5-2 last night I thought I would turn up and play like that again. I’m not saying I expected to win, but I felt I’d play well.
“I’m looking forward to playing in the Masters in January. I haven’t been there before, everyone tells me how mental it is. There are a lot of people there watching so it will be different from anything I have experienced. Hopefully I do myself justice.”