Three-time champion Ding Junhui takes on Barry Hawkins in a mouth-watering Last 32 tie at the 2022 UK Championship in York on Sunday.
The first meeting between the decorated duo in four years sees them go head-to-head in the season’s first Triple Crown event at the York Barbican.
Ding has a rich history in this prestigious competition, having lifted the trophy in 2005, 2009 and 2019 and returns as a qualifier after winning two matches to reach the main event.
Now ranked world number 38, Ding defeated Thepchaiya Un-Nooh 6-2 and Robert Milkins 6-4 to seal a return to the two-table setup.
The Chinese star reached the Semi-Finals of the Turkish Masters in March, but has started the new season slowly, suffering early exits in the British Open and Northern Ireland Open.
Hawkins, meanwhile, finished runner-up at the European Masters in August and comes into this event as the number ten seed.
His best run in the UK Championship came 12 months ago when he reached the Semi-Finals before losing out to eventual champion Zhao Xintong.
Hawkins has won his last three meetings with Ding and seven of their 11 in total, including the 2018 World Championship Quarter-Final and 2018 Shanghai Masters Semi-Final.
The match gets under way from 7pm GMT and will be contested over the best of 11 frames, with either Mark Williams or Jamie Clarke awaiting the winner in the Last 16.
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