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Ali Carter to meet Anthony Hamilton in German Masters Final

Ali Carter scored a 6-2 win over Martin Gould in the semi-finals of the German Masters and is now just one win away from regaining the title he captured in 2013.

Gould’s hopes of defending his title ended as he missed balls at crucial moments. World number 14 Carter, who beat Marco Fu in the 2013 final, goes through to face Anthony Hamilton over 17 frames on Sunday, with the winner to receive the 80,000 Euro top prize.

Chelmsford’s 37-year-old Carter will be bidding for the fifth ranking title of his career and is hoping to win two ranking crowns in the same season for the first time, having landed the World Open in July.

Londoner Gould took the opening frame today, knocking in a long pot on the penultimate red to initiate a 30 clearance. Carter hit back to win the next two with breaks of 83 and 61. In frame four, Gould led 57-0 only for Carter to make an excellent 71 clearance which included a fine pot on the last red along a side cushion.

Carter missed the final brown in frame five when he had a chance to extend his lead, allowing his opponent to clear for 3-2. But in the next it was Gould’s turn to make crucial errors as he missed tricky pots on both the final pink and black. Carter slotted the black into a baulk corner to double his lead.

World number 19 Gould led 55-17 in frame seven when he missed a tough pot on the third-last red. Carter punished him again with a 48 clearance to make it 5-2.

Two-time Crucible finalist Carter missed the black off its spot at 46-0 in frame eight, but it mattered little as he sealed frame and match when Gould failed to get the snookers he needed on the last red.

Anthony Hamilton reached his first ranking event final in 15 years by beating Stuart Bingham 6-4 at the German Masters.

Veteran Hamilton, 45, has come through a strong section of the draw in Berlin, knocking out Mark Williams, Mark Selby, Barry Hawkins and now world number two Bingham. On Sunday he’ll face Ali Carter over 17 frames, with the winner to take the title and 80,000 Euro top prize.

Nottingham’s Hamilton will contest the third ranking final of his career, having lost to Fergal O’Brien at the 1999 British Open and Mark Williams at the 2002 China Open, when he led 8-5 only to lose 9-8. Victory at the Tempodrom on Sunday night would see the popular cueman finally shed the tag of ‘best player never to win a ranking event.’

It’s remarkable turnaround for Hamilton, who almost dropped off the professional tour last season. He just survived, and has enjoyed a dramatic improvement this term, winning 23 out of 35 matches.

Bingham had a chance to win the opening frame but missed the last red to a corner pocket at 54-35, allowing Hamilton to snatch it. A run of 89 put world number 66 Hamilton 2-0 up before Bingham got the better of a scrappy 42-minute third frame.

The fourth came down to the last red and a cracking long pot from Hamilton set him up to clear for 3-1. In frame five, Bingham got the snooker he needed on the pink but then played a weak safety and Hamilton knocked the pink into a baulk corner for 4-1.

A marathon 47-minute sixth frame came down to a long tactical exchange, and Bingham could only get two of the three snookers he needed before his opponent potted yellow and green to go four up with five to play.

Bingham hit back with breaks of 49 and 80 to take the next two frames and when he made a 55 clearance to close to 5-4 he seemed to have the momentum. But a poor break off in frame ten proved his last shot as Hamilton made a match-winning 77.