Junhui Ding to face Ronnie O’Sullivan in UK Championship final

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Junhui Ding to face Ronnie O’Sullivan in UK Championship final
Junhui Ding takes a shot in his semi-final clash with Judd Trump on Saturday
Junhui Ding takes a shot in his semi-final clash with Judd Trump on Saturday
Profimedia
Junhui Ding (36) will face Ronnie O’Sullivan (47) in the UK Championship final on Sunday after edging past Judd Trump 6-4 in a tense semi-final clash at the York Barbican.

After battling past Mark Williams 6-5 in their quarter-final on Friday, Ding was once again 2-1 and 3-2 down in the opening frames this time around, as he fought his back to win the final two and book his place in his second successive final.

The world number 17, who will take part in his fifth final overall, will need to be on top form to prevent O’Sullivan from winning a record-extending eighth title as he looks to claim his fourth.

"I like to play the greatest players of all time," Ding told Eurosport. "I like to play players in good form and have tough matches. It helps improve my game.

"I’ve got a lot of supporters here. I’ll just do my best and make sure I give him another good game."

"I just couldn’t really get going," a deflated Trump said after his defeat. "I think the first frame was important. I’ve started off well all week and had a great chance, but missed an easy ball and lost that frame.

"When you miss easy balls, you always get punished. In the end, I think Ding missed less easy balls than me.

"I gave it my all. The concentration wasn’t quite where it normally is. I was just missing easy-ish balls."

In the afternoon session, O’Sullivan beat Iranian Hossein Vafaei 6-2 and will compete in his ninth championship final.

The pre-tournament favourite, and world number one, threw threw away a two-frame lead but won the next four in a row as he bids to extend his own winning record at the Triple Crown event.

Sunday’s final gets underway at 1pm with the evening session taking place from 7-10pm.

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