Mark Allen and Stephen Maguire set up a blockbuster final session of the Coral Tour Championship, ending the afternoon locked together at 4-4.
There are high stakes heading into tonight’s play. A top prize of £150,000 is up for grabs, with Maguire also able to depose World Champion Judd Trump from the top of the Coral Cup standings with victory. That would see the Scot bag an additional £100,000 bonus.
Surprisingly the pair have only met six times in their career so far. Allen holds the edge in the head-to-head, leading 4-2. However, Maguire won their most recent clash 6-0 in the semi-finals of this season’s UK Championship.
Allen started strongest this afternoon, composing breaks of 50 and 76 to establish an early 2-0 lead. Maguire refused to wilt and contributions of 89 and 69 saw him draw level at 2-2 at the mid-session.
When play resumed, Maguire took the lead for the first time in the match. Allen quickly restored parity with a sublime break of 125 to level at 3-3. They then traded a scrappy final two frames of the session to end 4-4.
The pair will return at 7pm to play the best of 19 encounter to a conclusion.