Mark Selby is through to the last eight of the 2022 Masters after dispatching Stephen Maguire 6-3 in a hard-fought contest on Tuesday evening.
Selby will face close friend Barry Hawkins in his tenth Masters quarter-final.
"Happy to get the win," Selby said after the match. "It wasn't pretty but I've played some good matches this year and got beat so it's nice to not be on top of my game and come through a game.
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"Just echoing what the players have been saying all the week it's great to have the full crowd back in Alexandra Palace. It's not been the same playing in front of nobody.
"Me and Barry are good friends off the table, but when we come on the table we both want to bash each other's heads in."
- 'Goodness gracious me' - Selby produces remarkable fluke against Maguire
- 'Incredible' - Selby waits 'an age' for red to drop into pocket
After Selby went ahead in a 45 minute, 44 second opening frame, Maguire levelled with a break of 87.
But the Jester from Leicester then went on to produce one of the moments of the match by turning in a stunning fluke at the start of the third, despite a member of the crowd shouting “come on Stephen!” just moments before potting.
Selby then missed an easy red before Maguire made an unbelievable mistake as he reached 46, only to screw the white into a middle pocket. Selby then pinched the frame to go 2-1 up.
In the fourth frame of Selby's clash against the Scot, the Jester from Leicester had to wait for seemingly an age to see his red drop into the pocket. Nevertheless, Maguire won the frame and the two players went into the mid-session interval locked at 2-2.
Watch Selby's red take 'an age' to drop in
A run of 26 saw the world number one take a one-frame advantage before rattling off a break of 64.
At 4-2 down Maguire had the chance to reduce the deficit, looking good on 53, but he overran his position and Selby capitalised to move within a frame of the quarter-finals.
Maguire produced a solid 84 break to pull one back and set up a tense finale, but Selby sealed his place in the quarter-finals with a 45 break.
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