UK Championship: Mark Allen beats Stephen Maguire 6-1 to reach semi-finals

Northern Ireland's Mark Allen
Mark Allen took control of the quarter-final by moving into a 4-0 lead
Betway UK Championship
Venue: York Barbican Dates: 27 November-9 December
Coverage: Watch live across BBC Two, BBC iPlayer, BBC Red Button, Connected TV, the BBC Sport website and mobile app from 1 December.

Mark Allen will face England's Stuart Bingham in the UK Championship semi-finals on Saturday after a 6-1 win over Scotland's Stephen Maguire.

Allen took control of the match as he moved into a 4-0 lead - helped by a break of 122 in frame three which was the 400th of his professional career.

Maguire's top break of 74 reduced the margin but Allen closed out the match by winning the next two frames.

Bingham also had a 6-1 margin over compatriot Kyren Wilson.

Former world champion Bingham potted 15 reds and 15 blacks as he chased a maximum 147 break in the third frame, but missed the yellow with the cueball close to the side cushion.

However, he made further runs of 53, 84, 61 and 50 to progress to last four for the third time.

Allen unimpressed by performance

Apart from his century in frame three, Allen managed only one other break over 50, as a run of 53 helped him clinch the opener.

But Maguire was unable to find any fluency as Allen clinched victory despite not having to find top gear.

"I didn't feel like I played well," said Allen, who bemoaned the conditions in York.

"In the first three frame I didn't miss many but from 3-0 up in the a first to six, you need to play pretty poorly to lose.

"It was very bouncy out there. Very heavy and I was struggling to screw back, move the white and open the balls."

Stuart Bingham looked on course for a maximum break in his win over Kyren Wilson
Mark Allen has been impressed by Stuart Bingham's form this week

Bingham 'the form player this week'

Maguire is Allen's best friend on tour and the Antrim man described his win as a "hollow victory".

"He was struggling out there and I didn't really enjoy the match at all."

Allen added that he will need to raise his game considerably for Saturday evening's semi-final against Bingham.

"He's probably been the form player this week. He's been awesome. He's scoring really, really heavily. I'm going to have to play a lot better."

Defending champion Ronnie O'Sullivan stayed on course for a record seventh UK title by beating Martin O'Donnell 6-1.

Leicester man Tom Ford will be O'Sullivan's semi-final opposition in Saturday afternoon's first semi-final after he defeated Joe Perry 6-2.

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