John Higgins reached the World Snooker Championship quarter-finals for the 16th time after wrapping up a 13-7 win over Noppon Saengkham in Sheffield.
The 46-year-old Scot did the damage in Sunday night’s second session when he reeled off seven frames in a row to move two away from victory at 11-5.
He won the first upon their resumption but then watched a mini fightback from his opponent, who reduced the deficit to 12-6 then came agonisingly close to a maximum before hitting a tough last red into the jaws.
“Last night was obviously massive for me and it left me with one foot in the quarter-finals but you’ve got to stay professional and get those extra few frames,” said Higgins.
“I feel like I’m starting to get a bit of rhythm going. You need to try and build up in this tournament – you very rarely look at past champions who have gone through the card and blitzed people.”
Former champion Stuart Bingham stepped on the gas to sink Kyren Wilson 13-9 and join Higgins in the last eight.
Resuming at 8-8, Bingham won the opening frame of the day before three consecutive half-centuries took him one away from victory.
Wilson cleared the colours to claim a tense 21st frame and keep his hopes alive, but missed his chance in the next, enabling Bingham to set up a last-eight clash with either Judd Trump or Anthony McGill.
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