The 2023 World Snooker Championship has finally reached the one-table format and in the opening sem-final it’s Luca Brecel vs Si Jiahui. Who will be victorious and take their place in this weekend’s final? Let’s take a look with our free snooker betting picks.
- What; 2023 World Snooker Championship, Semi-Final
- Who; Luca Brecel (9) vs Si Jiahui (Q)
- Where; Crucible Theatre, Sheffield, England
- Format; Best of 33 Frames (first to 17)
- When; Thursday, April 27th – Saturday, April 29th 2023
There’s not many people who would have predicted these two names would be lining up in the semi-final at the start of the quarter-finals, never mind at the start of the competition. But that’s exactly what has happened, as the conqueror of Ronnie O’Sullivan, number nine seed Luca Brecel, will take on the fearless young qualifier, Si Jiahui in the opening World Snooker Championship semi-final.
To get to this stage, Luca Brecel defeated Ronnie O’Sullivan 13-7 in his quarter-final. While Si Jiahiu beat fellow qualifier, Anthony McGill 13-12 in his last eight match. This is the first time either player has reached this stage of the competition.
𝗦𝗜 𝗝𝗜𝗔𝗛𝗨𝗜 𝗜𝗦 𝗔 𝗖𝗥𝗨𝗖𝗜𝗕𝗟𝗘 𝗦𝗘𝗠𝗜 𝗙𝗜𝗡𝗔𝗟𝗜𝗦𝗧!! 🇨🇳
The 20-year-old has reached the last four on debut!
He beats Anthony McGill 13-12, setting up a meeting with Luca Brecel.#CazooWorldChampionship | @CazooUK pic.twitter.com/6ZKJjtw229
— World Snooker Tour (@WeAreWST) April 26, 2023
Betting to win the 2023 Snooker World Championship
Neither of these two players is the favorite to win the competition with the best online sportsbooks. That accolade goes to the four-times winner, Mark Selby who is -110. Selby was one of our original picks to win the 2023 World Snooker Championship, and as of yet, we have seen no reason to change our minds.
Following on from Selby is Luca Brecel at +275. Brecel was looking down and out at the end of the opening day of this quarter-final with O’Sullivan. But resuming at 10-6 down, the Belgian did the unthinkable and won seven successive frames to take out the former betting favorite.
Next in the betting is the popular Northern Irishman, Mark Allen. Allen is +300 to win his first ever Crucible title. But with little experience at this stage of the competition, he is set to have his work cut out getting past Mark Selby.
And finally, it’s Si Jiahui at +750. The 20-year-old from China has had an astonishing competition, and it just got better when he defeated Anthony McGill in a dramatic final frame decider to take his place in the semi-final. And let’s not forget, Jiahui is a qualifier!
|2023 Snooker World Championship Betting|
Luca Brecel -255
Belgian’s Luca Brecel goes into his semi-final against qualifier Si Jiahui as the -255 favorite to win the match. And why wouldn’t he! Afterall, he has just defeated Ronnie O’Sullivan, the defending champion and most pundits favorite to win a record eighth title.
- 1st Round – Beat Ricky Walden (Q) 10-9
- 2nd Round – Beat Mark Williams (8) 13-11
- Quarter-Final – Beat Ronnie O’Sullivan (1) 13-10
Going into his quarter-final, Luca Brecel was the underdog. Brecel clearly hadn’t read the script though. He came into the second day 10-6 down. But he quickly got down to business, winning the first four frames to go into the mid session interval at 10-10.
At the break in play, many thought O’Sullivan would get himself together and come back out to complete the win. But it wasn’t to be. In total, Brecel reeled off seven successive frames – which included breaks of 112, 64, 72, 61, 78 and 63 – to complete a magnificent 13-10 win over the Rocket.
BREAKING NEW GROUND 🔓🌟
🇧🇪 Luca Brecel battles back from 10-6 down to oust the defending champion Ronnie O'Sullivan and reach the semi-finals at the Crucible! @WeAreWST | #CazooWorldChampionship pic.twitter.com/X1V0S6qb9d
— Eurosport (@eurosport) April 26, 2023
Prior to beating O’Sullivan, Brecel defeated Ricky Walden 10-9 in a close 1st Round match. And then he signaled why he is such a threat at this competition, by defeating Mark Williams 13-11 in the 2nd Round.
Si Jiahui +175
Yes, beating Ronnie O’Sullivan is impressive, but just look at what Si Jiahui has done to get this far. And before you look, bear in mind that Jiahui is a 20-year-old qualifier all the way from China. What he has already achieved is nothing short of amazing.
- 1st Round – Beat Shaun Murphy (4) 10-9
- 2nd Round – Beat Robert Milkins (13) 13-7
- Quarter-Final – Beat Anthony McGill (Q) 13-12
The win over Shaun Murphy in the 1st Round is the high profile one. But beating Anthony McGill can’t be underestimated. McGill was playing well, he had already knocked out Judd Trump (10-6) and Jack Lisowski (13-8) to get to this stage. And at 11-10 down to McGill, Jiahui showed immense courage to battle back and take the match 13-12.
Unfortunately for Si Jiahui, this is where we think his fairytale will come to an end. It would be a great story if he could win the competition, but that can’t be the criteria for making our snooker betting picks.
This is the first time that Luca Brecel has made it past the 1st Round in Sheffield. And it is the first year that Si Jiahui has even played in this competition. No player has the edge here in terms of Crucible experience.
But what Luca Brecel does have is a win over Ronnie O’Sullivan in the bank. He also has a lot more snooker experience than his 20-year-old opponent. All this doesn’t guarantee Brecel the win, but it does give him a significant advantage.
There is a nagging doubt that the young Chinese superstar can cause an upset. And why not? He’s fearless, and he’s come this far after all. So why can’t he go all the way?
But we have to stick with Brecel to win. Si Jiahui at times plays attacking shots that defy belief. They may be fearless, but it means he will undoubtedly leave opportunities for Brecel, and at the moment the Belgian is playing well enough to cash in. That’s why we’re making Luca Brecel our pick to win the 2023 World Snooker Championship semi-final.