Judd Trump came from 3-0 down to beat Ricky Walden 5-4 and reach the semi-finals of the Australian Goldfields Open, where he will meet China’s Xiao Guodong.
Bristol’s Trump, who is playing in Bendigo for the first time since 2011, is now just two wins away from winning his first ranking title since the 2012 International Championship.
Walden compiled breaks of 104 and 72 in winning the first three frames. Trump turned the tide with a break of 110, then nicked frame five on the colours and made an 86 to level at 3-3. Walden regained the lead with a run of 80 and looked set for victory until he broke down on 49 in frame eight. Trump cleared superbly with 77 and made 85 in the decider for an impressive win.
“Ricky started off very well, I didn’t do a lot wrong and I was 3-0 down,” said Trump. “I got back into it, but at 4-3 down I missed an easy ball because a camera flashed on my shot, and I thought that was it. But he missed quite an easy ball and I made a good clearance, and in the last frame I made another good break.”
Xiao, who was runner-up to Ding Junhui at last season’s Shanghai Masters, scored a 5-2 victory over Matthew Stevens with top breaks of 57, 61, 91 and 63.
“I knew it was going to be a tough match, but Matthew didn’t play well,” said Xiao. “He didn’t play as well as he did in previous matches. I played decent safety then finally got some chances.
“Judd and I are roughly same age but he has achieved a lot more than me, winning three ranking titles. He plays in an attacking style so I have to play good safety against him. He will be favourite if he is in form but I don’t care who I play. I always play for the title, otherwise I wouldn’t be a professional snooker player.”