China Open: Mike Dunn shocks Mark Selby to make first ranking semi-final
Last Updated: 04/04/14 5:22pm
Redcar veteran Mike Dunn claimed the biggest win of his life as he stunned World No 2 Mark Selby to reach the China Open semi-finals.
The 42-year-old, ranked a lowly 73rd, beat Selby 5-3 in Beijing and will tackle home favourite Ding Junhui on Saturday for a place in the tournament's showpiece match.
Journeyman Dunn thought about quitting the professional tour last season, so despondent was he to be consistently losing in the first round at low-profile events or in qualifying tournaments week after week.
But victory over Selby and a first ranking event semi-final of his 23-year career provide the justification for prolonging his career.
China Open Results
Neil Robertson 5-3 Graeme Dott
Allister Carter 5-3 Ricky Walden
Ding Junhui 5-2 Mark King
Mike Dunn 5-3 Mark Selby
Dunn can now he can start dreaming about a major title, he is guaranteed prize money of £21,000, however the champion will take home £85,000.
China's leading player Ding is aiming to become the first player since Stephen Hendry to win five ranking titles in a season. Having already collected four in the current campaign.
Ding has a first-class opportunity now after beating Mark King 5-2, with four breaks above 50 guiding him past the Essex potter.
World No 1 Neil Robertson and Ali Carter will go head to head in the semi-final on the opposite side of the draw.
Australian Robertson fended off Scotland's Graeme Dott 5-3 in their quarter-final, while Carter came through by the same scoreline against fellow English potter Ricky Walden.
The World Championship is just around the corner but this is a big event in Beijing and one I enjoy playing in.
Carter, who faced a battle with testicular cancer earlier this season, is looking to head to the Crucible for the World Championship later this month with a trophy under his arm.
"The World Championship is just around the corner but this is a big event in Beijing and one I enjoy playing in. It's a chance this week to do well at the end of a tough season. I'm giving it my all," Carter told World Snooker's website.
"Neil will be tough to beat but it's just great to be in the semi-finals."
Robertson has been troubled by a virus for much of the week, winning three matches 5-4 before being grateful to avoid a decider against Dott.
Until recently, Robertson had looked on course to reach 100 century breaks this season, having long since broken the record for most tons in a campaign, but he has yet to breach three figures in China and is stuck on 92.