Kyren Wilson came from behind to take a giant step towards a place in the World Snooker Championship final after moving 13-11 up in his last-four showdown with Anthony McGill in Sheffield.
World number eight Wilson had work to do as he trailed 6-2 heading into day two of his second appearance in a Crucible semi-final, having also reached this stage of snooker’s blue-riband event in 2018 before succumbing to four-time World champion John Higgins.
But the Warrior came out fighting on Thursday, hitting three centuries and a further three breaks over 50 as he won 11 of the 16 frames played to move to within four of a maiden final.
Although despite seeing his lead disappear, McGill fired a warning sign that the contest is far from over as he closed the day’s play with a magnificent total clearance of 136.
Wilson, who dethroned reigning champion Judd Trump in the quarter-finals, came flying out of the blocks with breaks of 100, 77 and 73 on the way to winning three of the first four frames in the morning session.
And despite McGill moving 8-5 ahead, the three-time ranking event winner responded by taking the next three frames with a top run of 116 to level at 8-8.
The first four frames of the evening were shared before Wilson edged his nose in front for the first time at 11-10 thanks to a brilliant break of 116.
He took the next on the pink before ruthlessly pouncing with a wonderful 105 clearance after a faltering McGill had got in first before breaking down on 27.
However, appearing in the one-table set-up at the Crucible for the first time, the Scotsman did not lie down and responded magnificently in the final frame of the day with a 136 total clearance keeping his hopes very much alive.
Earlier in the day, Mark Selby fought back from 5-3 down to establish a 9-7 overnight lead against an out-of-sorts Ronnie O’Sullivan.
After a lacklustre opening session on Wednesday in which he failed to register a single break over 50, the Jester would have been delighted to only trail the Rocket by two frames.
And he was much-improved on Thursday, taking the first frame before a run of 97 levelled the contest at 5-5.
A cracking last red then paved the way for the three-time World champion to move in front for the first time, before a 58 opened up a two-frame cushion.
O’Sullivan responded after the interval with breaks of 87 and 82 as he won two of the next three frames to trail by one.
However, the five-time World champion rattled a long pink in the final frame of the session and thumped the table in frustration.
Selby ruthlessly stepped in with 76 to restore breathing space once again ahead of Friday’s conclusion.