In-form Barry Hawkins needs just one win from his final two matches to book a place in the Play-Offs, as the Championship League Winners’ Group draws to a climax in Coventry on Thursday.
There is everything to play for on the final day of the invitational internet-streamed event with just two points separating all seven players who are aiming to be crowned the winner at the Ricoh Arena and secure a place in the Champion of Champions.
World Grand Prix winner Hawkins made a strong start to his quest for a second trophy in the space of a month – winning three of his four matches on Wednesday.
The Hawk is tied at the top of the table with reigning champion Judd Trump, who also lost just one of his opening four games and currently has the edge having conceded two less frames.
Judd Trump is eyeing a fourth Championship League crown (Dan Mullan/Getty Images)
Trump looked very purposeful in his mission to land a fourth Championship League title on day one, as he made three centuries along the way including a stunning total clearance of 140 against David Gilbert – the highest of the Winners’ Group so far which would earn him an additional £1,000 on top of his current earnings.
The chasing pack is led by 2015 finalist Mark Davis, who trails the leading duo by a single point after winning two of his four matches on Wednesday, and will be eager to go one step better this year.
Each of the four remaining players collected just one win from their opening three matches but their hopes are still very much alive, having played a game less than the top three.
John Higgins and World Grand Prix finalist Ryan Day find themselves in a stronger position after winning more frames, but Gilbert and Shoot-Out champion Anthony McGill are playing catch-up in that respect.
Nevertheless, everything can turn on any given day on the snooker calendar and it promises to be a fascinating final day of the 2017 Championship League, which gets underway at 11am GMT on Thursday.
All matches will be contested over the best of five frames at the Ricoh Arena with the top four at the end of the round-robin stage advancing to the Play-Offs, where a straight knockout will determine the winner in Coventry.
Championship League Snooker 2017 Schedule
Thursday March 2
David Gilbert v John Higgins
Anthony McGill v Ryan Day
Mark Davis v John Higgins
Barry Hawkins v Judd Trump
Not before 2pm
David Gilbert v Ryan Day
Anthony McGill v Judd Trump
Mark Davis v Ryan Day
Anthony McGill v John Higgins
David Gilbert v Barry Hawkins
Not before 6pm
Not before 7pm