Mark Williams holds a three frame lead after the first day of the World Snooker Championship final in Sheffield.
A late finish to his semi-final match yesterday appeared to have no impact on the Welshman, as he made a storming start to the final against Scotland’s John Higgins at the Crucible Theatre.
Williams secured the opening four frames of the contest to put early pressure on Higgins in a battle of two former champions.
A champion’s response came from Higgins, who proceeded to win three of the next four frames to reduce the deficit.
Both players traded frames at the start of the second session, with Higgins still looking to make further inroads into Williams’ lead.
The Scot pulled himself back level at 7-7, only for Williams to claim the next two frames to move out in front again.
A nervy final frame would also go Williams, who will head into the last day with a 10-7 lead in the best of 35 frame final.
Williams won the world title in 2000 and 2003.
His rival Higgins has triumphed at the Championships in 1998, 2007, 2009 and 2011.
He will hope to avoid a repeat of last year’s final, where he lost to Mark Selby.
Action will conclude tomorrow.