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Gary Wilson hits wonderful 147 on way to Welsh Open final

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Wilson made the 199th maximum break in tournament play

Gary Wilson produced a wonderful 147 on the way to reaching the Welsh Open final with a 6-4 victory over John Higgins in Llandudno.

The Tyneside Terror hit the 199th maximum break in tournament play at Venue Cymru on Saturday – and the fifth of his career – as he set up a showdown with Martin O’Donnell in Sunday’s showpiece.

Wilson went close to achieving perfection in the opening frame of his clash with the five-time Welsh Open champion, breaking down on 104 after missing the 14th red to the left centre.

However, there was no denying him in the following frame, the world number 16 was barely out of position as he compiled the 11th 147 at the Welsh Open to remain on course for the high break prize of £5,000.

Fresh from successive whitewash victories over reigning champion Robert Milkins and Anthony McGill, Wilson came flying out of the blocks in his ninth ranking semi-final with a further break of 82 as he registered 372 unanswered points.

Runs of 35 and 40 moved the reigning Scottish Open champion 4-0 to the good at the mid-session interval – making it 14 successful frames on the spin – though Higgins stopped the rot with a timely 93.

Wilson responded with 89 and looked like he would seal victory in the following two frames when building 55-0 and 49-0 leads.

Although, Higgins produced trademark counter clearances of 69 and 66 to keep his hopes of reaching an eighth final at this event.

The Scotsman had never lost a Welsh Open semi-final and closed the gap to a single frame with a break of 78.

But it proved a false dawn as Wilson knocked a wonderful red into the left centre with the cue-ball tight on the top cushion, paving the way for a contribution of 73 to get over the line.

Earlier in the day, O’Donnell edged out fellow left-hander Elliot Slessor 6-5 to reach his maiden ranking final.

The first six frames were shared before the Londoner pulled two clear to lead 5-3.

Slessor stayed alive with breaks of 95 and 65 forcing a decider, but world number 76 O’Donnell held his nerve with a superb match-winning clearance of 126.