Stuart Bingham has won Group 4 of the 2022 BetVictor Championship League Snooker Invitational beating Kyren Wilson in the Group Final 3-2 at the Morningside Arena, Leicester live on FreeSports in the UK and networks worldwide.
Bingham had reached the semi-finals after beating Donaldson 3-0 earlier on recovering from a loss to Lu Ning to finish third in the group and meet Selby to face the winner of Wilson and Scott Donaldson in the final. Selby took the first frame off Bingham, but it was Ball Run who hit back with a clearance of 137 to level it before the current World Champion took a 2-1 lead in frame three with a break of 90. Bingham came back though with breaks of 51 and 65 in the resulting two frames to meet Wilson in the final.
Wilson meanwhile had looked imperious all day long and dispatched of Donaldson 3-0 in good time with a low-scoring first frame heading his way before 121 and 75 ensured the title defence rumbled on.
When it came to the final, Bingham found himself 2-0 up with a break of 64 in the second frame to be one away from Winners’ Group but Wilson has proven time and time again his steely nature and took the next two with breaks of 71 and 50 to force a decider. The decider flowed in Bingham’s favour who put in a clearance of 94 to win it and join Graeme Dott, Wenbo Liang and Zhao Xintong in Winners’ Group.
Bingham is set to face Wilson at the Masters next week: “I played pretty solid since I have been here over the last four days. I am over the moon. It’s a great start to the year. I made a few nice 100s. It was nice to get one over Kyren ahead of next week. He beat me 3-1 in the group stage. I got lucky to beat him in the end. Next week is a different kettle of fish in front of a packed crowd at Alexandra Palace. I felt like my game has been there and not turned up. It’s nice this week to turn up and make a few 100s. Just to hopefully put me in good stead for the rest of the season.”
The group playoff fixtures were decided late on with any one of Judd Trump, Lu or Donaldson either facing elimination, the playoffs or a fifth-place finish. Trump played his part by beating Lu 3-0 as Donaldson rallied to defeat Xiao Guodong meaning it was Trump who was eliminated and Lu who would return tomorrow finishing fifth. Meanwhile, Donaldson met Wilson in the group semi-final stage for a place in the final. Selby has opted to withdraw from Group 5 with Welsh Open winner Jordan Brown to join the group. We wish Mark the best of luck at next week’s Masters.
Each of the seven players faces each other once in the round-robin group stage, after which the top four players in the league table progress to Saturday evening’s play-offs. The eventual group champion advances to February’s Winners’ Group with the remaining players who finished in the top five during the league phase continuing to Group Five which begins tomorrow when three new players join the tournament. The bottom two players in each group phase are eliminated. All matches are best of five.
The tournament carries a prize fund of £205,000 with players earning £100 per frame won with significant bonuses for their final group position and increased prize money in the Winners’ Group. A place in the 2022 Cazoo Champion of Champions is also on the line with each group featuring seven players with matches being held over two days.
Martin Gould, Ali Carter and Brown join at Group 5 tomorrow from 11 am on FreeSports in the UK and Ireland as well as networks worldwide. Table 2 is available globally on Matchroom.Live excluding the Nordic and Baltic regions.
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