Former world champion Peter Ebdon emerged as a surprise finalist against Stephen Maguire in the latest snooker ranking tournament, which is taking place in China, according to BBC Sport
. The Bank of Beijing China Open. is the second tournament
of the season to take place in China.
, the 2002 world champion, has fallen on lean times of late and not only has he slipped out of the world's top sixteen players, his place in the top thirty-two was in jeopardy prior to this tournament. However, he has played some impressive and dogged snooker to reach the final.
In his first match Ebdon beat a Chinese player, Lu Haotian by 5 frames to 2. He then beat Matthew Steven 5-3; current world champion John Higgins 5-4, and in his semi-final he defeated the Chinese number 1, Ding Junhui, 6-3.
reports that in the semi-final, Ebdon fell 1-3 behind Junhui, but he then won a number of lengthy and closely contested games to win 6-3. Ebdon's highest break was 68.
In contrast to Ebdon's recent form, Stephen Maguire
has had a good season and he was runner-up to Ronnie O'Sullivan in the recent German Open snooker event (which was reported on the Digital Journal
). To reach the final, Maguire defeated Barry Hawkins 5-1; Ricky Walden 5-4; Ronnie O'Sullivan 5-4; and, in the semi-final, he beat the in-form player of the season, Stephen Lee, 6-2.
In his semi-final, World Snooker
notes, Maguire was held to 2-2 against Lee. He then game out of the mid-session interval and compiled a cracking break of 91 which triggered a four-frame winning streak and a 6-2 victory.
Maguire's win over Ronnie O'Sullivan was the match of the tournament, with Maguire securing victory in the deciding frame on a re-spotted black (as the YouTube video below shows).
Sunday's final will be contested over the best of 19-frames (the first to 10 is the winner). The winner will win £75,000 (around $120,000) and the runner-up will take £30,000 (approximately $48,000).