Shaun Murphy believes he has a “free crack” at Judd Trump after setting up a mouth-watering World Championship Quarter-Final at The Crucible.
The Magician overcame Masters champion Yan Bingtao 13-7 on Monday to book his place in the last eight for the first time since reaching his third World final in 2015.
Champion in 2005, Murphy held a commanding 10-6 advantage heading into his final session with Yan, who was eyeing a maiden voyage into the quarters.
The 38-year-old wasted little time in getting the job done; winning three of the opening four frames with runs of 65 and 59 along the way.
And he is relishing the prospect of a last-eight clash with world number one Trump.
“I felt as if I broke the back of the match early,” Murphy told BBC Sport.
“From 6-2, I guess it was mine to lose and we pretty much shared the frames from there.
“Of course, I’ve run out the winner in the end.
“I can’t believe it’s been six years (since I last reached the quarter-finals). I’ve had a number of bad defeats here in the last few years, so it’s been a great week to play well and still be here going into week two.
“(Judd’s) the world number one and been the player of the season over the last couple of years.
“I’m here in the last eight; there’s no pressure on me, I’ve done it all before and won it before.
“I’ve got a free crack at him really and I’m looking forward to it.”
The 2019 World Champion had to withstand a brief fightback from David Gilbert before running out a 13-8 winner.
Trailing 11-5 overnight, the Angry Farmer came out firing with breaks of 68 and 79 to cut the gap to 11-7.
But it proved a false dawn for the 2019 semi-finalist, with Trump hitting a break of 107 as he won two of the next three frames to seal the deal.
Meanwhile, Stuart Bingham needed just 43 minutes to round off a 13-6 victory over Jamie Jones.
Leading 10-6 in the battle of the two remaining qualifiers, ‘Ballrun’ dominated proceedings with breaks of 117, 68 and 102 seeing him over the line.
The former World champion will face Anthony McGill in his first Crucible quarter-final since lifting the trophy in 2015.
Elsewhere, Mark Selby will play Mark Williams in the last eight after wrapping up a comfortable 13-7 success against Mark Allen.
A stunning total clearance of 132 was the highlight for the three-time champion, who won four of the five frames to progress to the quarter-finals for the ninth time.
“I feel good in my game. I’ve been working hard on the practice table,” said Selby.
“I know I’m in a good place mentally; I feel in a good place physically, so I’m giving myself a chance and that’s all you can ask for.
“The last few years, I’ve come here feeling half-confident, but not as confident as I feel at the minute.”
World Snooker Championship 2021 Results
Monday April 26
Stuart Bingham 13-6 Jamie Jones
David Gilbert 8-13 Judd Trump
Mark Allen 7-13 Mark Selby
Shaun Murphy 13-7 Yan Bingtao