Ronnie O'Sullivan beats Shaun Murphy to reach Champion of Champions final

Ronnie O'Sullivan
O'Sullivan has reached the final in all five Champion of Champion events in which he has competed

Five-time world champion Ronnie O'Sullivan powered into the final of the Champion of Champions in Coventry with a 6-3 win over Shaun Murphy.

The 42-year-old world number three, a beaten finalist in the last two years at this event, made successive century breaks against the defending champion.

Murphy also had two tons but O'Sullivan moved in sight of a third title.

On Sunday he will face the winner of Saturday's second semi-final between Mark Allen and Kyren Wilson.

Murphy, who beat O'Sullivan to win last year's final 10-8, looked to have won the first frame with a 49 but O'Sullivan pinched it by clearing to the pink with a 43.

The 2005 world champion Murphy, having beaten European Masters winner Jimmy Robertson and Ding Junhui to reach the last four, levelled with a 123, missing the final black, but O'Sullivan built a two frame cushion with runs of 64 and 82.

A 51 put him in command of the next frame but when 21 points ahead he missed a red into the corner, thumping the table in annoyance, and Murphy took it on the black, reducing the deficit to 3-2 with a clearance of 34.

After Murphy missed an early blue, O'Sullivan put the frustration of the previous frame behind him with a clearance of 129 and quickly compiled the 965th century break of his illustrious career with a 127 in the next.

Murphy responded with a 102 but despite an outrageous mis-cue from O'Sullivan, when he inadvertently jumped the white over the black and into the pocket, he wrapped up a third successive victory against the world number 10 with two fifty breaks in frame nine.

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