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World Snooker Championship 2021: Day Seven preview and order of play – Robertson looks to fend off Lisowski

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John Higgins v Mark Williams live stream | World Snooker Championship 2021 preview

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Anthony McGill fends off Ronnie O’Sullivan fightback in dramatic World Championship decider

The in-form Australian leads Lisowski 5-3 in Sheffield (Photo by George Wood/PA Images)

Neil Robertson will be looking to press home his advantage over Jack Lisowski as the World Championship second round continues at The Crucible on Friday.

The first round is officially done and dusted for another year in Sheffield, with the identity of the 16 remaining players now confirmed.

Fresh from winning the Tour Championship at the end of last month, Robertson is one of the favourites to lift the trophy on May 3.

The Australian was far from his brilliant best during the early stages of his eagerly anticipated clash with fellow left-hander Lisowski, who edged 3-2 ahead during the opening session on Thursday.

However, the world number three clicked into gear at the right moment with a stunning 135 total clearance followed by a neat break of 76 to move two frames clear overnight at 5-3 to the good.

They resume with the second of their three allocated sessions, where world number 14 Lisowski will be looking to stay in touch and maintain his hopes of a maiden Crucible quarter-final.

Ronnie O’Sullivan and Anthony McGill are also finely poised at 4-4, and will play to a finish.

Scotsman McGill, who has never beaten the Rocket in six attempts, produced a brave fightback from 4-1 down to emerge from their opening session on level terms.

It is now effectively the best of 17 frames to become the first player through to the last eight.

Arguably the most mouth-watering tie of the second round, John Higgins and Mark Williams commence for what will be a repeat of the 2018 final.

Three-time champion Williams, who prevailed 18-16 in the showpiece three years ago, has won three of the four previous Crucible encounters between the players.

Although four-time winner Higgins – also a runner-up in three of the last four years – will be eager to avenge that reverse during the first eight frames.

Elsewhere, a battle of two former finalists gets underway between Kyren Wilson and Barry Hawkins.

It is the second time in three years that the players have faced off in the last 16 at the Crucible, with Wilson prevailing 13-11 in the 2019 showdown.

The world number six, who was beaten by O’Sullivan in last year’s showpiece, resumes his quest to go one step better eight months on.

Meanwhile, 2013 runner-up Hawkins has been one of the Crucible’s form players in recent years, having reached a further four semi-finals.

But the world number 11 has fallen at the second hurdle in each of the last two years, and will be desperate to stop the rot here by emerging with a positive scoreline after the opening two sessions of this contest.


World Snooker Championship 2021 Day Seven Schedule

*Indicates final session

Friday April 23

Last 16

17 Ronnie O’Sullivan (4-4) Anthony McGill
22 Barry Hawkins v Kyren Wilson

19 John Higgins v Mark Williams
21 Neil Robertson (5-3) Jack Lisowski

17* Ronnie O’Sullivan v Anthony McGill
22 Barry Hawkins v Kyren Wilson