Barry Hawkins got off to a fast start against Ronnie O'Sullivan in his semi-final clash on Saturday afternoon, but the Rocket fought back to ensure the pair enter the evening session at 4-4.
Hawkins began perfectly, clearing the table with 125 in the opening frame for his 380th career century. He continued his fabulous opening with a quickfire 138 clearance.
The Rocket was grounded. After missing an easy pink, he conceded in the third at 61-27 to hand The Hawk a deserved three-frame lead.
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O'Sullivan pulled a frame back in the fourth with breaks of 50 and 60 enough to reduce the deficit.
After the interval the world number two pulled it back. The Rocket began with a fluke and took full advantage with a break of 63 to move within one of Hawkins.
He made it all square with a break of 61 in a 15-minute frame. Ronnie made it four in a row with break of 94 to set up a crucial eighth frame.
O'Sullivan smacked his cue against the table in frustration after missing an important red at 0-15 to present Hawkins the chance to take the frame. The 41-year-old capitalised with a break of 65 to set up an enthralling evening decider at Celtic Manor.
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TOUR CHAMPIONSHIP SCHEDULE
Monday, March 22
John Higgins 8-10 Ronnie O'Sullivan
Tuesday, March 23
Neil Robertson 10-5 Jack Lisowski
Wednesday, March 24
Mark Selby 10-3 Kyren Wilson
Thursday, March 25
Judd Trump 7-10 Barry Hawkins
Friday, March 26
Neil Robertson 10-3 Mark Selby
Saturday, March 27
Barry Hawkins 4-4 Ronnie O'Sullivan (At the time of writing)
Sunday, March 28
Neil Robertson v TBC (1pm and 7pm)
HOW TO FOLLOW THE EVENT
We will cover the event with report and reaction on eurosport.co.uk and the Eurosport app.
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