Ronnie O’Sullivan is now the 8/15 favourite in the snooker odds to win a fourth world championship, but his semi-final with Matthew Stevens is the latter to get underway.
In the afternoon session, fresh from a dominant victory over Stephen Hendry, Stephen Maguire returns to the table to take on Ali Carter.
Ronnie O’Sullivan -5.5 frames to beat Matthew Stevens @ 5/6
O’Sullivan was in sparkling form for much of his victory over Neil Robertson and a repeat of this performance would see him breeze beyond Stevens.
Stevens failed to register a single century in his own success over Ryan Day and he will not be presented with three chances to win a frame by O’Sullivan.
The Rocket has triumphed in all of the last six meetings between the pair and the only clash from this spell that was longer than a best of nine, O’Sullivan ran out a comprehensive 9-3 winner.
Ali Carter +2.5 frames to beat Stephen Maguire @ 11/10
Maguire’s 13-2 victory over Hendry in the quarter finals may have resulted in the retirement of the seven-time Crucible champion, but he has yet to really be tested in Sheffield thus far.
The draw has certainly been kind to Maguire as he has not needed to beat a top-16 player to reach the semis and Carter will present his toughest challenge to date.
Carter has already shown some battling qualities to reel off four frames in succession to beat Judd Trump and then kept his composure to beat Jamie Jones.
Facing Maguire will present no sterner challenge than Carter has already faced as he prepares for a third Crucible semi final in five years.
Carter also triumphed on the last occasion that the pair met in an important semi final, at the Welsh Open in 2010.