World number one Robertson has shone throughout the tournament and will again in the final
There has been one standout player at the Alexandra Palace this year and that man, Neil Robertson, looks set to defeat Shaun Murphy in the Masters final for a second time on Sunday.
These two met in the showpiece of this event three years ago and, after a fairly level start, the Australian powered through to a comfortable win in the end. That contest ended 10-6 to the left-hander and we could be looking at a similar result this time around.
Robertson did not particularly catch the eye in his opener against Robert Milkins but his following two matches have been sensational. He battered Ali Carter 6-1 in the quarter-finals and then, against all odds, repeated that scoreline against Ronnie O’Sullivan in the final four. The Rocket was not at his legendary best, but the Aussie was superb and thoroughly deserved his lop-sided win.
It has been an up-and-down season for Robertson thus far but he looks to be peaking at an opportune time and anyone who can despatch O’Sullivan by five frames does not look likely to be beaten by any other mere mortal.
Murphy certainly should not be overlooked. He has beaten the world champion Mark Selby, a man in great form in Stephen Maguire and strolled past Mark Allen in the semis. The Magician is playing well and will not make it easy for Robbo by any means.
However, not only is superior form and a better record in this event going in Robertson’s favour, but so is the head-to-head record between the players. From 2011 onwards, the pair have played 18 times and the Aussie has won 14 of them, including the aforementioned final in 2012. There is no real debate over who is the better player and the world number one should prove it once again with the Masters trophy on the line.