John Higgins battled back from a slow start to beat Yan Bingtao 6-2 and reach the Northern Ireland Open final - and he vows to give it everything in the showpiece.

Higgins fell two frames behind in the match - similar to when he was three behind Mark Williams in his quarter-final success - but his confidence did not waver.

Bingtao had defeated Higgins in last season's Masters final and the wizard of Wishaw had to show character to ensure a repeat did not happen.

The Chinese youngster punished Higgins early on for a slow start but eventually the Lanarkshire snooker star applied the pressure himself.

Higgins is through to the final.
Higgins is through to the final.

Higgins struck an impressive break of 83 to draw level before a devastating break of 90 to win the game.

He will meet Mark Allen - who is playing on home soil - in the final following his win over Ricky Walden. Higgins' furthest run at the Northern Ireland Open before this year's tournament was last year's journey to the last four.

"I am really delighted with this," an ecstatic Higgins told WST. "Yan has beaten me the last couple of times in big finals and semi-finals. But I was loving it out there.

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"I gave it everything. I really enjoyed it and I think I played really well. I think the two of us - me and Mark - will have a great support tomorrow. I've got to be 100% focused.

"I'll give it my all. I will give it everything. It will be enjoyable too and I think it will be a great match. I have a lot of respect for Mark as a player, so I can't wait."

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