Northern Ireland Open Snooker 2021 | Day Six Preview and Order of Play
John Higgins and Mark Williams renew their rivalry as the Northern Ireland Open fourth round takes centre stage on Thursday.
Just eight players will remain by the close of play on day six of the opening Home Nations event of this season.
The pick of the last-16 ties sees two members of snooker’s ‘Class of 92’ going head to head once again.
Indeed, this will be the 33rd competitive meeting between Higgins and Williams, with both players having recorded 16 wins apiece from the 32 previous encounters.
Each of them was in fine scoring form during their third-round wins on Wednesday – hitting a combined five centuries – and will be targeting more of the same here.
Though level, Williams has enjoyed the better of the recent head-to-head record, winning the last four clashes including the 2018 World Championship final.
The 2015 Crucible final will also be rerun on Thursday, with Shaun Murphy and Stuart Bingham locking horns once more.
Meanwhile, reigning champion Judd Trump aims to build on his impressive record against Jimmy Robertson, having won six of the seven previous meetings, as Ronnie O’Sullivan faces Yan Bingtao in another tasty clash.
World champion Mark Selby also boasts a strong head-to-head against fourth-round opponent David Gilbert; the Jester winning six of their eight encounters including a 9-1 thrashing in the 2019 English Open final.
The third round plays to a conclusion earlier in the day. UK champion Neil Robertson looks to advance to round four of this event for the first time against Ricky Walden, while home favourite Mark Allen takes on Matthew Stevens.
Six-time ranking event finalist Jack Lisowski is looking to avert a third defeat in four meetings with Welsh rising star Jackson Page, as Stephen Maguire locks horns with Liam Highfield.
Play begins at 10am BST on Thursday with all matches contested over the best of seven frames at the Waterfront Hall in Belfast.
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Northern Ireland Open 2021 Day Six Schedule
Thursday October 14
54 Mark Allen v Matthew Stevens
55 Liam Highfield v Stephen Maguire
59 Neil Robertson v Ricky Walden
58 Jackson Page v Jack Lisowski
72 Ronnie O’Sullivan v Yan Bingtao
73 Lyu Haotian v Mitchell Mann
70 Shaun Murphy v Stuart Bingham
74 John Higgins v Mark Williams
68 Winner of Match 52 v Jimmy Robertson
69 Winner of Match 54 v Winner of Match 55
71 Winner of Match 58 v Winner of Match 59
75 Mark Selby v David Gilbert