Since winning the Shanghai Masters and reaching the semifinals of the German Masters and Champion of Champions earlier this season, 24-year-old Kyren Wilson has cemented himself as one of snooker's hottest new talents.
Today at the World Snooker Championship, the qualifier proved his class again by reaching his first quarter-finals at the Crucible Theatre, Sheffield, beating the number seven seed Mark Allen 13-9.
Wilson edged through his first round match against Joe Perry 10-9, but he looked much more comfortable against Antrim's Allen, racing to a 7-1 lead at the end of the first session with top runs of 50, 55, 93 and 103.
Allen exploded out of the blocks in the second session, producing breaks of 122, 103, 60 and 66 to heroically pull the best-of-13 match back to 7-5, before Wilson moved further clear with a top break of 82 on route to a 11-5 lead.
Former World Open and PTC Finals champion Allen once again responded strongly with top breaks of 86, 103 and 64 to narrow the gap at 11-9, but in the end it was too late as Wilson won the final two frames with a lovely break of 71 in the last to come through a comfortable 13-9 winner.
“I'm just delighted to get through, that was a crazy match,” said Wilson after the match. “There's only eight players in it, and I'm here to win the whole thing,” he added.
Wilson's victory sets up a mouth-watering Crucible quarter-final clash against world number one and 2014 champion Mark Selby who edged qualifier Sam Baird 13-11 yesterday.
With his form and recent wins, Wilson is now as low as 16/1 to win the title. Many punters will fancy a spin on the young player from Kettering to become the first qualifier since Shaun Murphy in 2005 to win the tournament.
Also through to the World Snooker Championship quarter-finals is another qualifier, Ding Junhui, who controlled the final two sessions against Judd Trump to progress a 13-10 winner.
Chinese number one Ding sets up another massive quarter-final match against two-time world champion Mark Williams, who himself beat Michael Holt comfortably 13-8 in the previous round.
For all the results and scores from the Crucible, head to Snooker.org
World Snooker Championship 2016 Quarter-Finals:
Alan McManus v Ricky Walden / John Higgins
Ding Junhui v Mark Williams
Marco Fu v Barry Hawkins / Ronnie O'Sullivan
Kyren Wilson v Mark Selby