World Snooker Championship: Mark Selby leads Stuart Bingham 9-7 at Crucible

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Mark Selby claimed three Crucible crowns between 2014-17 – with Stuart Bingham winning the other in 2015
Venue: Crucible Theatre, Sheffield Dates: 17 April-3 May
Coverage: Watch live on BBC One, BBC Two, BBC Four and Red Button, with uninterrupted coverage on BBC iPlayer, BBC Sport website and BBC Sport app.

Mark Selby opened up a slender 9-7 lead over Stuart Bingham as he edged a highly-entertaining second session of their World Championship semi-final.

Three-time champion Selby hit back-to-back 134 breaks as a three-frame burst moved him 8-6 ahead on Friday morning.

Bingham responded with a 127 but Selby pinched the final frame to lead heading into the evening session at 19:00 BST.

The other best-of-33 semi-final resumes at 14:30 BST with Kyren Wilson leading fellow Englishman Shaun Murphy 6-2.

Resuming at 4-4 after Thursday afternoon’s first of four scheduled sessions, 2015 champion Bingham produced a 62 clearance to steal the day’s opening frame from well behind.

Bingham, bidding to become the first qualifier to win the tournament since 2005, knocked in a break of 83 to take the 11th frame, but Selby, who won the 10th, took the 12th to keep the pair locked at 6-6 at the mid-session interval.

The standard, already high, kicked up a further notch as 37-year-old Selby’s successive total clearances earned him a two-frame cushion.

Bingham, 44, replied with a century of his own, his 11th of the tournament, but he missed the last red on 51 in the morning’s final frame and Selby pinched it on the colours to restore his advantage to two.

Analysis

Dennis Taylor, 1985 world champion, commentating on BBC TV

This semi-final really has come alight, the standard they are both producing is fantastic.

After the mid-session interval, the snooker they produced was quite incredible. Mark Selby really picked the pace up and was missing absolutely nothing.

It’s been a fabulous match and Stuart has played his part and almost drew level at the end.

It’s been a wonderful session of snooker, both players played very well but it’s Mark who will return this evening with that two-frame advantage.

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