World number eight Kyren Wilson established a commanding 6-2 lead after the first session of the BetVictor European Masters final at the Stadthalle in Fürth.
Wilson was the last player to capture a ranking title at the Stadthalle, when he won the Paul Hunter Classic back in 2018. However, Hawkins won a non-ranking edition of the same tournament in 2019, beating Wilson himself in the final.
Both players are attempting to end a ranking title drought this evening. Wilson last lifted ranking silverware at the BetVictor Championship League back in 2020, while Hawkins’ most recent ranking win came at the 2017 World Grand Prix.
Kettering cueman Wilson took the opener this afternoon, before winning the second on a re-spotted black. It was 30-year-old Wilson’s third frame won on a respot within the space of 24 hours, having won two in his semi-final with Ali Carter yesterday.
The pair shared the following two frames and headed in for the interval with Wilson leading 3-1. When play resumed, Hawkins reduced his arrears to 3-2 courtesy of breaks of 51 and 55.
From that point onwards Wilson assumed control of the tie, claiming three on the bounce to end the afternoon 6-2 to the good. The pair will return at 8pm (CEST) to play the best of 17 encounter to a conclusion.