Judd Trump continues his quest for a fifth ranking event final of the season when he faces Ali Carter in the Last Four of the Players Championship, while Ding Junhui and Anthony Hamilton face off in the remaining quarter-final clash at Venue Cymru in Llandudno on Friday.
Trump and Carter both enjoyed impressive 5-3 victories in the Last Eight over Ronnie O’Sullivan and Neil Robertson respectively, and are now just two more wins away from lifting a second ranking title in a single season for the first time.
European Masters champion Trump, who has been the most consistent player during the campaign, is appearing in his seventh semi-final after making breaks of 86, 113 and 60 on the way to overcoming the Rocket on Wednesday.
The Ace claimed his third win on the spin against O’Sullivan but is now aiming to end a run of four defeats in five against World Open champion Carter, who is looking to reach his third final this term.
Despite losing the opening frame on a re-spotted black having led 63-16, the Captain demonstrated his trademark determination to bounce back against Robertson in the quarters – making breaks of 94 and 87, before closing out the victory with a cool clearance from last red to pink.
Ding Junhui is aiming to build on his stunning victory over John Higgins in Llandudno (Dan Mullan/Getty Images)
Meanwhile, Ding and Hamilton meet for the first time in just under three-and-a-half years, as they bid to complete the semi-final line-up.
Both men enjoyed very contrasting first-round victories with Ding battling back from 4-0 down to stun John Higgins 5-4, while Hamilton eased to a surprisingly comprehensive 5-1 success over Stuart Bingham.
Shanghai Masters winner Ding, who is aiming for a third ranking event final this season, looked in real trouble as he fell 4-0 behind against the four-time World champion on Wednesday.
However, the interval appeared to inspire the Chinese sensation, who responded with breaks of 83, 67 and 107, before a further run of 59 in the decider was enough to secure a remarkable victory.
By contrast, German Masters champion Hamilton endured no such difficulty as he swept Bingham aside in the latest of a string of impressive performances during a wonderful season for him.
Breaks of 131, 105 and 59 aided the Sheriff of Pottingham, who booked his place in the quarter-finals of a ranking event for the fifth time this term.
Day five of the 2017 Players Championship gets underway at 1pm GMT with the remaining quarter-final, while the opening semi-final will break off at 7pm.
The Last-Eight clash between Ding and Hamilton will be contested over the best of nine frames, while the best of 11 will determine the winner from Trump and Carter in the semis at Venue Cymru in Llandudno.
Friday March 10
Ding Junhui v Anthony Hamilton
Judd Trump v Ali Carter