Mark Selby and John Higgins to meet in 2017 World Championship final

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But Selby, a two-time victor, capitalised on a crucial mistake from Ding on a blue in the final frame and he edged his way to victory, setting up a likely meeting with four-time world champion John Higgins, who needs only one frame to beat Barry Hawkins in Saturday's evening session.

The 38-year-old started the final session with a 9-7 lead, but saw Maguire win the opening two frames of the evening session to draw level at 9-9. The world number one made a break of 128 to extend his lead to 10-7 before Ding hit back with a run of 95.

In the other semi-final, Scotland s four-time world champion John Higgins - appearing in his first semi-final since the last time he won the crown in 2011 - retained control advancing to a 10-6 lead after being up 5-3 overnight against Barry Hawkins.

Higgins believes he will be facing one of the greats if he and Mark Selby are the players going head to head for silverware glory on Sunday and Monday.

The best-of-33-frame tussle could still contain plot twists, and Higgins came to Sheffield with a hunch Hawkins might be a dark horse who would carry off the title. "That's a big moment during the game and obviously for me it's worked out well".

And he is convinced he can secure another world title on Monday night, six years after his last triumph.

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Higgins is tied on 28 with Ronnie O'Sullivan and Steve Davis, eight adrift of Hendry, while world number one Selby has catching up to do after landing 11 so far.

"He s definitely got the belief now".

Defending champion and world No.1 Selby has been the player of the season and at the top of a rolling ranking system for two-and-a-half years without interruption. "I was saying before this event he was my pick to win it". The man from China had him in all sorts of trouble, but Selby somehow manages to get out of it and then all of a sudden you are in trouble.

Ding is out for revenge after losing the final to Selby at the Crucible Theatre a year ago, and he looks up for the fight after showing all his mettle to come back after a disappointing second session on Friday morning.

It then took graft from Selby to nose in front and fend off a rejuvenated Ding following the interval.

In Thursday morning's session Higgins quickly got back into his stride, winning the first frame of the session with a 61 break. I'm still young, I need to be better prepared for next year.