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O'Sullivan produces marvellous fightback to stun Ding

ESPN staff
November 22, 2013 « Farah and Ohuruogu named Athlete of the Year | Chartbeat test »
Ronnie O'Sullivan edged a tight 11-frame match with the in-form Ding Junhui © PA Photos
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Ronnie O'Sullivan produced a marvellous comeback to entertain the crowd at the Ricoh Arena and defeat Ding Junhui 6-5 in their Champion of Champions Group One final.

World champion O'Sullivan responded from both 3-0 and 4-2 down against Ding to prevail and book a place in the semi-final proper, where he will now play world No. 1 Neil Robertson.

Ding quickly moved into a three-frame lead following breaks of 53 and 66, before O'Sullivan responded with visits of 53, 63 and 50 to move within one.

Following a scrappy sixth frame, Ding edged further ahead but a terrific 98 saw the 'Rocket' close the gap again. In-form Ding, who recently became the first player in over two decades to win three successive ranking events, knocked in a 91 and appeared set for the match.

However, O'Sullivan won three consecutive frames - including a tense decider - to set up a semi-final tie with Robertson.

Earlier on Friday, O'Sullivan rocketed through his Group One semi-final with Mark Davis, barely allowing his opponent any time at the table during a 4-0 whitewash.

O'Sullivan took the opening frame with a break of 69, before further breaks of 54, 101 and 130 ensured a quick-fire victory. Ding overcame Barry Hawkins 4-2 in their Group One semi-final.

The Champion of Champions pits together the top 16 players in the world, who are split into four groups based on their world rankings. Each group features two semi-finals then a final, with each of the four winners of the finals going through to the semi-finals of the tournament proper.

Champion of Champions results and fixtures

Group One
Game 1: Ronnie O'Sullivan (1) 4-0 Mark Davis (16)
Game 2: Ding Junhui (8) 4-2 Barry Hawkins (9)
Final: Ronnie O'Sullivan 6-5 Ding Junhui

Group Two
Game 1: Mark Selby (2) 4-2 Shaun Murphy (16)
Game 2: John Higgins (7) 3-4 Stephen Maguire (10)
Final: Mark Selby 6-3 Stephen Maguire

Group Three
Game 1: Judd Trump (3) 4-1 Marco Fu (14)
Game 2: Ricky Walden (6) 0-4 Stuart Bingham (11)
Final: Judd Trump 6-2 Stuart Bingham

Group Four
Game 1: Neil Robertson (4) 4-3 Martin Gould (13)
Game 2: Mark Allen (5) 3-4 Ali Carter (12)
Final: Neil Robertson 6-5 Ali Carter

Semi-Finals
Ronnie O'Sullivan v Neil Robertson
Mark Selby v Stuart Bingham
Ties to be played on November 23

Final
Winner Semi-Final 1 v Winner Semi-Final 2
Final to be played on November 24

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