WATCH: Antrim's Brown beats Se...


WATCH: Antrim's Brown beats Selby on final black to reach first semi-final

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Jordan Brown got the better of a real battle of wits with Mark Selby to reach his first ever ranking semi-final. 

The Antrim man beat the world no.4 on the final black to progress to the semi-finals of the Welsh Open.

Brown will play Stephen Maguire for a place in the final.

The 33-year old punched the air as the black settled into the left corner-pocket, to leave him "over the moon".

"Years of hard work," he said afterwards, "has finally come off for this one moment.

"I know it's not over yet, I've got a semi-final to look forward to tomorrow, but for now the feeling I have inside is relief more than anything.

"But to finally prove myself against one of the top players... I feel like I've achieved massive things here today."

In terms of frames won, Brown was never behind in what turned out to be a 5-4 victory. But despite occasional two-frame leads, he never felt he could relax.

"He's just hard as nails," Brown said of Selby, "He makes it so hard for you. He's just so granite.

"I was aware of his reputation - making it hard for you - but all I had to concentrate on was myself, and I feel like I handled it pretty well there."

Selby missed an opportunity to take the match, missing the deciding black to the middle pocket. Before that miss, Brown felt the game had gone beyond him.

"I still fancied him to get it though," Brown said, "But when he missed it, it was just like 'just compose yourself and give the black everything', because even though it looked an easy shot it certainly didn't feel it.

Reaching the semi-finals off the back of a quarter-final appearance at last month's German Masters completes a huge turnaround for the world no.81 who almost lost his tour card last year.

He puts his progress down to hard work and an emphasis on consistency.

Also through to the semi-finals is Ronnie O'Sullivan, and in altogether less stressful fashion than Brown.

His quarter-final opponent Ali Carter was forced to withdraw through a non-COVID-related illness.

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Ali Carter Jordan Brown Mark Selby Ronnie O'Sullivan Snooker Stephen Maguire Welsh Open

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