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Saturday, 5 May, 2001, 14:40 GMT 15:40 UK
Framewatch: O'Sullivan v Swail
Ronnie O'Sullivan (Eng) beats Joe Swail (NI) 17-11
Frame 28: O'Sullivan plays a great safety shot to snooker Swail behind the yellow on its spot, and as a result opens the frame with a break of 39 - carelessly missing an easy red.
Swail responds, opening the pack from an early black, reaching 65 with only one red left on the table - tight on the cushion.
Swail attepts to double the red with safety in mind and misses.
O'Sullivan produces a fine snooker and as result wins a free-ball and an opportunity to win a place in the final.
The "Rocket" obliges and takes the match 17-11.
Frame 27: Swail gets the first clear opportunity of the frame after O'Sullivan misses a half-chance.
After compiling 54 the Northern Irishman falls the wrong side of the blue and as a result leaves a missable red - he did, but O'Sullivan didn't take advantage and Swail was immediately back in to take the frame with his second half century of the frame.
Frame 26: The "Rocket" miscues a simple black after compiling 38 points from his first visit to the table - Swail left a long red from his break.
Swail hits back, equalling the scores, but takes on a tricky red and misses.
O'Sullivan needs no second invitation and wins the frame with a clearance to the black.
Frame 25: A relaxed but determined Joe Swail produces a scintillating 114 break after potting a long red left early on by Ronnie O'Sullivan.
The sixth century of the match ended when Swail was set to better his own highest break of the tournament - 140. A tricky yellow rocked in the jaws of the pocket as the arrears were reduced to five frames.
0-131 (107) 79-16 (73) 57-67 66-2 (62) 83-0 (58) 107-9 (70) 71-51 63-9 117-2 (108) 119-9 (119) 6-78 (51) 44-75 63-24 (51) 66-43 (54) 31-92 (92) 46-87 62-59 133-0 (133) 57-59 61-58 79-17 (79) 18-105 (52) 0-138 (138) 84-9 (84)
The exocet now needs just two frames when play resumes at 1430 BST on Saturday, to reach his first world final.
It is the 31-year-old, 16th seed's third ton of the tournament.
It seems, however, that he is only delaying the inevitable.
A scoreline of 79-77 gives O'Sullivan a 14-7 lead.
The shock of the frame sees O'Sullivan come off the top cushion and down the table, leaving a red hanging over the middle pocket.
However, Swail still has an awful long way to go.
O'Sullivan takes a 12-6 lead with a stunning century break in a frame which lasts just over 10 minutes.
He could have equalled the highest break of the tournament so far - his opponent Swail's 140 - and claim a share of the £20,000 prize, but for a bad position on the a final black, which he then misses.
It's a frame Swail can't afford to lose, but he misses a vital pink and O'Sullivan capitalises by calmly rolling it in before sinking the black.
The match, which many believed would be over in three sessions, is now perfectly poised for Friday evening's session. O'Sullivan, playing brilliant snooker in patches, remains the favourite to book his place in Sunday's final but Swail will be anxious to stop him.
The match is developing into a gripping contest, with O'Sullivan slightly fazed at Swail's steely determination. The plucky Irishman, nicknamed the comeback king after his miraculous recoveries earlier in the tournament, is scoring heavily when given the chance.
However, it will take an almighty effort from Swail if he is to recover from 10-5 down against snooker's most gifted cue master.
With 25 points left in the table, O'Sullivan played a serious contender for shot of the championship, thundering in a long green before screwing back in sensational fashion for the brown.
Even Swail applauded The Rocket's effort - cue power at its very best.
O'Sullivan piles on the pressure, taking the second frame of the day with another brilliant century - this time 119.
O'Sullivan is not spectacular, but never misses a chance to score heavily.
O'Sullivan claims the fifth frame 87-0 with a 58 winning break, then a 71 break sees him go two frames clear.
The final frame before the interval goes in favour of O'Sullivan with a 62 break bringing him back to all square.
O'Sullivan moves into a 57-43 advantage, but a 24 clearance to the pink sees Swail pinch the frame to regain his advantage.
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