Chris Wakelin and Mark Williams have reached the final day of the BetVictor Championship League Snooker – Ranking Edition, by winning their respective groups during stage two at the Morningside Arena in Leicester.
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Kyren Wilson began Group E strongly, with back-to-back 3-0 wins over Sanderson Lam and Anthony Hamilton. That gave him an advantage over nearest rival Wakelin, who had won his opening match by the same scoreline over Hamilton.
Wakelin followed up that result with a 2-2 draw against Lam, leaving him requiring a victory against Wilson in his last match to progress to the final day.
Wilson knew he needed just a point to go through, but it was Wakelin who took the opener to lead 1-0. Wilson hit back with a century in the second to restore parity. The Kettering cueman required just one more frame for his spot in the next phase.
It was Shoot Out champion Wakelin who claimed the third, before a brilliant clearance of 114 gave saw him run out a 3-1 winner and earn a spot in the final eight.
Wakelin said: “It’s a tough format. You have to get results in every single game. It’s feasible that two wins and a draw aren’t enough in this format. I was against a good friend of mine in Kyren and I have learned a lot from him, but out on the match table you’re there to win and to finish with a century, there is no better way to win. Last year was a big breakthrough year for me, knowing that I did it in this very arena (win a ranking event) has given me the belief when the moment comes, like it has today, to go out there and do it against Kyren when it really matters. That’s where the experience from the Shoot Out has helped me grow.”
Williams’ passage through to the next stage was plain sailing through the morning with 3-0 whitewash wins over Barry Pinches and Martin O’Donnell. In the evening session he went on to complete the perfect day, scoring a 3-0 win over Robbie Williams to top the group.
Watch BetVictor Championship League Snooker – Ranking Edition on Viaplay Xtra – FreeView in the UK and Ireland. Those in Scandinavia, the Baltics, Netherlands, and Poland can watch live on Viaplay whilst Matchroom.Live is available to those without a broadcaster. See where to watch here.
The BetVictor Championship League Snooker – Ranking Edition carries a first prize of £33,000 and the winner also secures a spot in the 2023 Champion of Champions set to take place in Bolton from November 13-19 live on ITV.
Secure your tickets for the 2023 Champion of Champions from £15 here with the likes of Ronnie O’Sullivan, Judd Trump, Mark Allen, and Mark Selby already qualified.