Murphy has won three titles this season
A fast start from Shaun Murphy has given him a 6-2 lead after the first session of his Betfred World Championship semi-final against Barry Hawkins.
Murphy is in the semi-finals for the first time since 2009, when he lost to John Higgins in the final, and the world number eight is dreaming of a repeat of his 2005 title triumph.
The Nottingham-based potter looked sharp and confident at the Crucible as he build a four-frame advantage against fifth seed Hawkins, who came through a late night quarter-final battle against Neil Robertson last night by a 13-12 scoreline
Murphy took the opening frame with a break of 92, then made a 40 clearance to steal the second after Hawkins had broken down on 63. A scrappy third frame went to Murphy and it would have been 4-0 if he hadn’t gone in-off when potting the final black before the mid-session interval.
Shrugging off that error, Murphy won two of the next three frames with superb centuries, 105 and 138, sandwiching a run of 69 from Hawkins which gave him frame seven. Kent-based Hawkins, who is playing in the semi-finals for the third year in a row, led 51-0 in the last of the session, but Masters champion Murphy made an excellent 79 clearance to extend his lead.
They return tomorrow at 10am for eight more frames.
Hawkins had a wardrobe malfunction and needed his bow tie fixed by referee Jan Verhaas