Ali Carter Triumphs in Semis, Eyes Third Chinese Ranking Title

Ali Carter secured his 12th career ranking final appearance by comfortably defeating China’s Lyu Haotian with a score of 6-2 in their semi-final clash earlier today.

Carter is striving for his third ranking title on Chinese soil, following his victories in the 2010 Shanghai Masters and the 2016 World Open. The veteran, who has clinched five ranking event titles, broke a seven-year title drought in February by winning the German Masters in Berlin, triumphing over Tom Ford in the final.

The Captain is now set to compete in the final against either last week’s English Open champion, Judd Trump, or the 49th-ranked Wu Yize. The final will be a best-of-19 frames match, with the victor walking away with a prize of £140,000.

Lyu Haotian will have to wait longer for his first ranking title and second appearance in a final, as the 25-year-old has suffered defeat in four of his five semi-final appearances.

Carter kicked off the match with breaks of 64 and 81 to secure the opening frame. Although Lyu leveled, Carter won the third frame to regain the lead. The fourth frame, a shortened 46-minute affair, was taken by Lyu, resulting in a 2-2 tie at the mid-session break.

Following the break, Carter elevated his game and made a relentless push towards victory. Impressive breaks of 96, 122, 91, and 70 helped him secure four consecutive frames and ultimately emerge as a 6-2 victor.

Reflecting on the match, the 44-year-old Carter expressed, “I felt like I missed some opportunities in the first half. In the second half, all I could do was seize my chances. He provided me with four opportunities, and I capitalized on all of them to win frames. I was especially pleased to secure the final frame in a single turn. It’s never easy to close out a match and reach a significant final. Winning in a relatively smooth manner was satisfying.”

He acknowledged the pressure on Lyu Haotian and commended his opponent, stating, “It was a significant moment for him, and you could see that. The pressure he faced in a one-table setup during the semi-final of a major ranking event was immense, especially after defeating Ronnie yesterday. He’ll bounce back and have more opportunities.”

Carter also praised the event in Wuhan, emphasizing, “We all had certain expectations about Wuhan, but we’ve all been pleasantly surprised. It’s a sprawling city. I believe the players who stayed at home and opted not to participate missed out. This is undoubtedly one of the best China events.”

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