Judging by the way the Masters tournament has panned out at Alexandra Palace this year, it is somewhat fitting that Neil Robertson and Shaun Murphy meet in the final, having both knocked out the top two seeds on their way to the trophy match.
Murphy took care of number two seed Mark Selby in the very first round, while the stunning ease with which Robertson beat tournament favourite Ronnie O’Sullivan perhaps goes a long way to making the Australian favourite to claim the title.
Here our best bets for the match though:
Robertson has enjoyed the best of his battles with Harlow-born Murphy, winning nine of the 14 matches the two have played against each other to date.
It has never been all that easy for the Aussie to beat Murphy, though, and none of their matches have ever been decided by more than four frames either way, making backing a 10-7 or closer final result here a smart decision.
Just like their head-to-head history, these two have been close in the century-break stakes too, with Robertson edging Murphy slightly with four to the Englishman’s three.
What isn’t such a tight-run thing though, is the totals of those breaks, Murphy’s trio have all been in the low hundreds, with 103 his best, while Robertson has had breaks of 117, 127 and 128 in his quartet.
With such a close match expected, giving the underdog a two-and-a-half frame head start could be the way forward when backing a winner.
Robertson has never eased to victory over Murphy in his career and the 11th seed has had to come through some close matches to reach this stage against the Australian, not least in the opening two rounds against Selby and Stephen Maguire.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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