UK Championship: Neil Robertson beats John Higgins in York

By Owen PhillipsBBC Sport at York Barbican
Robertson holds off Higgins fightback
Betway UK Championship
Venue: York Barbican Dates: 24 November-6 December
BBC coverage: Watch on BBC Two, Red Button, BBC Sport website, Connected TVs, tablets, mobiles and app from 28 November.

Neil Robertson survived a superb John Higgins fightback to win a final-frame decider and reach the semi-finals of the UK Championship.

Robertson compiled a stylish century on the way to a 4-1 lead, despite three-time winner Higgins opening up with the 600th ton of his career.

And although two more centuries helped the Scot level at 4-4, Robertson held his nerve to progress 6-5.

China's Liang Wenbo opened with three centuries as he beat Marco Fu 6-5.

Wenbo said he played "beautifully" at the start of his match against Fu, and both he and Robertson expressed their relief at getting through.

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Robertson told BBC Sport: "It was a bit of an emotional rollercoaster.

"I played brilliantly to go 4-1 up but even at 4-1 the game is far from over against a player as good as John.

"Overall I am really happy with my mindset throughout the match and the way I played."

A final-frame decider in either match seemed highly unlikely after a breathtaking beginning at the York Barbican.

Robertson's response to falling behind was to repeat the majestic form he showed in his last-16 win over Stephen Maguire as he won four consecutive frames.

But world number seven Higgins then scored a 69 and two breaks of 134 in three frames to level at 4-4 and, although he hit back to force an 11th frame, a missed red early on proved telling and Robertson took full advantage.

The Cambridge-based Australian faces either Mark Selby or Matthew Selt in the semi-finals.

On the other table, Liang made breaks of 106, 132 and 138 and had 49 on the board in the fourth frame, but Fu made a brilliant 64 clearance that included a tricky green along the cushion to get off the mark.

Hong Kong's Fu reduced the gap to 3-2, and although he then slipped 5-2 behind he forced Liang into a decider, which the world number 29 edged.

Wenbo plays either Londoner Martin Gould or world number 81 David Grace in the semi-finals.

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