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O'Sullivan could extend his long winning run against Ding

Higgins should have enough to end Wilson title hopes

Ronnie O'Sullivan in action at the Crucible
1 of 1

Quarter-finals
BBC and Eurosport, from 10am

O'Sullivan v Junhui 10am
It's been ten long years since Ding Junhui beat Ronnie O'Sullivan in a match of note and while that run is going to end before long, it may not be just yet.

Ding is getting better and better and showed how much he had learned from his experience in reaching last year's Betfred World Championship final defeat to Mark Selby when fighting back from 12-11 down to pip Liang Wenbo 13-12 in the last 16.

O'Sullivan is a much more experienced cookie than Liang, though, and while there will be moments when Ding gets to display his superlative breakbuilding skills, there may not be enough of them for him to end his Rocket hoodoo just yet.

Five-time Crucible king O'Sullivan scored well in his first two victories over Gary Wilson and Shaun Murphy. Getting past Wilson was a huge relief to the Rocket, but he had few problems in again dominating Murphy in Sheffield.

There were moments in the second round when O'Sullivan looked under pressure – Murphy was potting balls freely while the Rocket could only sit and play with his fingers in his chair.

But credit to the 12th seed because he found enough in both matches progress and that may again be the case against Ding, who he leads 10-2 in their previous meetings.

Recommendation
R O'Sullivan -1.5 frames
1pt 7-10 Hills

K Wilson v Higgins 10am
Kyren Wilson is again advertising his claims to being a future world champion by saving some of his best snooker for Sheffield after a quiet campaign.

He did a tidy job of defeating 2015 Crucible king Stuart Bingham, although after leading 5-0 he let the Essex ace back into the match.

Wilson is unlikely to be able to be as charitable against John Higgins, who has played well all season.

The Scot showed he means business this year when producing a top-drawer response to fight back from 5-3 down against Mark Allen in round two and defeat the Northern Irishman 13-9.

Wilson is scoring okay, but his breaks may not be heavy or consistent enough to prevent him exiting the competition.

Higgins will not want to take any chances against one of the brightest young players in the game and he should claim a place in the last four before a deciding frame is required.

Recommendation
J Higgins -1.5 frames
2pts 1-2 BoyleSports

Hawkins v Maguire 2.30pm
Good pals Barry Hawkins and Stephen Maguire get it on with a place in the semi-finals at stake and while Maguire was once much the heavier scorer of the pair, Hawkins has become a more consistent breakbuilder in recent seasons.

Hawkins is favourite by virtue of his higher rank, but that will not guarantee him a passage into the semis. Maguire, who won three matches to qualify for the Crucible this year, is going about his business positively and the Scot can still be devastating among the balls, but he is no certainty to dominate in terms of table-time. 

Maguire disposed of his fellow Glaswegian Anthony McGill with ease in his Crucible opener this year and then thrashed Rory McLeod but there is a good chance his meeting with Hawkins will be close.

Bookmakers are taking little chance with total frames, but backing over 21.5 could still be the way to go in this best-of-25 showdown. 

Recommendation
Over 21.5 frames
1pt 8-11 Coral, Hills

Wilson is not scoring too badly but his runs may not be heavy or consistent enough to prevent him exiting the competition in the last eight
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