World Snooker Championship LIVE: Latest score updates as Mark Selby makes 147 but trails Luca Brecel in final

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Mark Selby and Luca Brecel are battling to become the 2023 snooker world champion at the Crucible Theatre.

Selby saw off Mark Allen in a slugfest on Saturday night while Brecel pulled off a stunning comeback to knock out China’s Si Jiahui. And it was Brecel who started this final quicker, taking a 6-2 lead into this evening’s session.

Selby has four world titles to his name and could become only the fourth player in the Crucible era to win a fifth, following in the path of Steve Davis, Stephen Hendry and Ronnie O’Sullivan. A fifth crown would cement Selby as one of the greats of the game, but standing in his way is the supremely talented Belgian Brecel, who at 28 is starting to find the best form his career. Brecel despatched the pre-tournament favourite O’Sullivan in the quarter-finals and his confidence looks bullet-proof as he takes on the famously gritty Selby.

Follow all the action from the Crucible Theatre with our live blog, below:

World Snooker Championship final

  • END OF SESSION: Mark Selby 8-9 Luca Brecel (best of 35 frames)

  • Selby makes maximum break of 147 in final

  • Selby going for fifth world crown as Brecel targets first Crucible title

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 8-9 Brecel

22:23 , Mike Jones

That’s the end of the evening session today. Mark Selby took it six frames to three to get right back into this World Championship final.

Luca Brecel still leads by one but Mark Selby is the hero of the night. His 147 was absolutely fantastic and a true sign of a four-time world champion.

What a finale we’re in for tomorrow.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 8-9 Brecel

22:21 , Mike Jones

Just the colours left and Brecel’s safety play is letting him down. He leaves the yellow on for Selby who rolls it into the middle left followed by the green to the top right.

The brown and blue quickly follow to secure the frame for Selby!

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 7-9 Brecel

22:18 , Mike Jones

Selby leaves Brecel with a difficult snooker to escape from and the Belgian does his best but leaves the cueball on for the last red of the frame.

Selby pots it and the black then plays another snooker to cover the yellow.

Selby now leads 51-48.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 7-9 Brecel

22:15 , Mike Jones

Luca Brecel is annoyed after a potential safety shot doesn’t finish behind the green as intended. The opens up the table for Mark Selby who racks up an impressive break of 42.

He trails by five but doesn’t have an angle on the last red so has to leave it safe.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 7-9 Brecel

22:04 , Mike Jones

Mark Selby’s play has just put Luca Brecel on the back foot and a few simple mistakes from the Belgian has let Selby back into the match.

Brecel does it again after a composed break of 48. A slight miscue leaves the red on to the bottom left and Selby rolls it in. The cueball flies wildly to the opposite pocket and hovers over the edge.

There’s no follow up colour for Selby. Brecel leads 48-1.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 7-9 Brecel

22:02 , Mike Jones

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World Snooker Championship final: Selby 7-9 Brecel

21:58 , Mike Jones

That was a wonderful break from Mark Selby and he plays with the cheering crowd as the table is reset. It’s the second 147 maxmium of the tournament and Selby’s first ever at the Crucible.

What a time to get it too.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 7-9 Brecel

21:55 , Mike Jones

Fan-dabby-dozy! Take a bow Mark Selby, that is spectacular.

With the pressure on, trailing in the World Championship final and a tricky table to navigate, Selby gets his 147!

Luca Brecel is amazed too, he stands up and gives Selby a hug. A maxium break!

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 6-9 Brecel

21:51 , Mike Jones

There’s a tense moment when Mark Selby needs a final red to force snookers from Luca Brecel. His shot is from the middle of the table and takes the red into the bottom left.

When he hits it the line looks slightly off but the pace on the ball is perfect and the red hits the corner of the pocket before dropping.

Selby’s secured the frame and is on for a 147.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 6-9 Brecel

21:45 , Mike Jones

Luca Brecel goes down the table and leaves a red hovering over the bottom left pocket. Mark Selby has another chance to break but the majority of the reds are clustered and he’ll have to open them up before thinking about winning the frame.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 6-9 Brecel

21:39 , Mike Jones

Selby is back in it. He notches up a break of 61 to claim the 15th frame and move back within three of the Belgian. The closer Selby can get before this session is over the better off he’ll be for tomorrow’s play.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 5-9 Brecel

21:34 , Mike Jones

After a series of safety shots a slight error in line from Brecel leaves Selby with a soft pot into the middle right which he nicely rolls in.

The reds are spread with the pink and black both accessible. Big chance for Selby here.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 5-9 Brecel

21:28 , Mike Jones

Mark Selby has made a few shots as this session has gone on that aren’t like him at all. Too often he’s left the cueball out of position or missed his safety.

A break of 15 ends after he cannons into the yellow and leaves a long red for Luca Brecel. Selby could do with picking up this frame, he needs to halt Brecel’s momentum.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 5-9 Brecel

21:21 , Mike Jones

Mark Selby stays in his seat. Luca Brecel takes another frame with a fantastic, and at times tricky, break of 67. The Belgian opens up a lead of four on Selby.

He’s halfway to the required 18 frames to win the title.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 5-8 Brecel

21:16 , Mike Jones

A slight opening appears with a tricky red to the top right and Brecel - like he has done all tournament - takes advantage. A break of 19 follows to draw he level with Selby but the cueball is nestled right up alongside a red on the left cushion.

Brecel has a chance to continue the break and plays a perfectly weighted shot across the table to roll the next red into the middle right.

Great shot! This is Brecel’s frame to lose now.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 5-8 Brecel

21:06 , Mike Jones

Brecel’s mistake leaves Selby in control but he can only tally up a break of 18 before a getting a thin slice on his red to the bottom right and leaving it in play.

The red isn’t pottable though and Brecel has to play safe.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 5-8 Brecel

21:01 , Mike Jones

Unfortunate.

A long shot to the bottom left pocket from Brecel sees the red bounce around the table, hit the green and knocks the colour into the top right pocket.

Selby is given four points and a clear shot on the loose red.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 5-8 Brecel

20:57 , Mike Jones

Brecel wins the frame! A break of 72 is enough for the Belgian to restore his three frame lead in the final.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 5-7 Brecel

20:55 , Mike Jones

Good work from Brecel.

He leaves himself out of position after potting a blue but gets out of trouble and increases his lead.

The way the reds have fallen though he’s been forced to play mainly off the blue and the pink. The black has been hidden for most of the frame.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 5-7 Brecel

20:49 , Mike Jones

That’s a good shot from Luca Brecel.

Mark Selby gets on the board but can only notch up a break of four. Brecel then goes to the middle right pocket and drops a tight red into the slot.

How big can he get this break?

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 5-7 Brecel

20:43 , Mike Jones

Luca Brecel breaks off for the 13th frame. He leaves Mark Selby on the top cushion and his only option is a containment safety. The start of this frame is a tactical affair.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 5-7 Brecel

20:35 , Mike Jones

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World Snooker Championship final: Selby 5-7 Brecel

20:30 , Mike Jones

Mark Selby won that mini session 3-1 and is back into this match.

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World Snooker Championship final: Selby 5-7 Brecel

20:25 , Mike Jones

The yellow drops, as does a tricky green which leaves Selby perfectly on the brown. The only other difficult shot is a medium length blue into the bottom right.

He gets it! The pink follows and Selby takes the frame.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 4-7 Brecel

20:22 , Mike Jones

Now then.

Selby manages to slip the red into the middle right and follows it up with the blue. He trails by three with all the colours remaining. Can he clean up from here?

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 4-7 Brecel

20:19 , Mike Jones

This frame is going to come down to the final red. Luca Brecel hasn’t had a chance to pot it so plays safe leaving Selby with a long shot down the table.

The red comes off the bottom cushion and leaves Brecel with a pot to the middle left.

He misses it!

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 4-7 Brecel

20:17 , Mike Jones

Mark Selby’s march towards winning the frame takes a hit after a ricochet from the left cushion knocks the final red into the cushion on the opposite side.

His break of 40 ends when Selby tries to flick the red and misses it. The cueball bounces off the cushion and clips the black for a foul of seven too.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 4-7 Brecel

20:12 , Mike Jones

It’s wonderful watching Luca Brecel play. An aggressive shot from the bottom sees him slot a red into the middle right before the cueball dances around the table and leaves set up on the black.

A follow up slice into the bottom left pocekt doesn’t drop though and the door is open for Mark Selby to nick the frame.

Brecel leads 43-1.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 4-7 Brecel

20:06 , Mike Jones

That’s unlucky. Breaking the reds was always going to be the trickiest part of Brecel’s trip to the table. He cannons into them from the right cushion but the cueball hits the pink and stays flush to the colour leaving nothing on.

Brecel plays safe after break of 34.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 4-7 Brecel

20:03 , Mike Jones

Oh that’s a mistake from Mark Selby. He has a long pot to the bottom right but catches the red thinly and sees it lip out of the pocket.

That leaves Luca Brecel with a couple of options to go at. There are a few tricky reds in play though so this will take some thinking through from the Belgian.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 4-7 Brecel

20:00 , Lawrence Ostlere

Selby does indeed take his chance, putting on 96 before missing a double on the green to fall just short of another century. Selby is scoring much better this evening already, and the brown he put away halfway through this frame, with the cue ball tight against the cushion, was exceptional. The gap is down to three once more.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 3-7 Brecel

19:49 , Lawrence Ostlere

Brecel begins frame 11 with some more outrageous potting but then misses a relatively simple red and sits back down with only 12 points on the board. It’s still early days in this best-of-35 final, but the balls are well set and Selby could do with taking opportunities like this one.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 3-7 Brecel

19:43 , Lawrence Ostlere

Brecel bounces back quickly though, and with his next opportunity he racks up an audacious, thrilling century break – probably the most entertaining break of the entire championship so far. Exhibition pots with the cue ball flying around the table, and all done with such nonchalance. Wow.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 3-6 Brecel

19:35 , Lawrence Ostlere

A bizarre moment disrupts Brecel’s break in this 10th frame: he sends a red rolling gently towards the middle pocket and begins walking around the table for his next shot, but the red veers with the nap of the table and somehow misses by a distance. Brecel is stunned, and Selby comes to the table only 27 points behind.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 3-6 Brecel

19:25 , Mike Jones

Mark Selby starts the evening session in the best possible way. A century break sees him set a marker for the session to come and moves the world no. 2 within three frames of the Belgian.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 2-6 Brecel

19:21 , Lawrence Ostlere

An excellent start by Mark Selby, who immediately racks up a half-century to close in on this first frame of the evening session in double quick time. Just a couple more reds needed...

Watch: Luca Brecel’s fine blue decides tight sixth frame

18:54 , Lawrence Ostlere

This was one of the crucial moments of the opening session earlier today: at 4-1 up, Brecel came out on top of this safety exchange with a delicate cut of the blue to clinch it and take a four-frame lead. The pot looked almost impossible but he made the angle work:

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 2-6 Brecel

18:52 , Lawrence Ostlere

Good evening and thank you for joining us – the World Snooker Championship final resumes shortly at the Crucible Theatre. The first finallist from mainland Europe, Luca Brecel, leads the four-time champion Mark Selby 6-2 after making a blistering start earlier today.

Summary: Luca Brecel dominates opening session against Mark Selby

17:34 , Lawrence Ostlere

Comeback king Luca Brecel revelled in his new role as a front-runner after dominating the opening session of the World Snooker Championship final against four-time winner Mark Selby at the Crucible.

The Belgian, who reeled off seven straight frames to sink Ronnie O’Sullivan in the last eight and then 11 in a row to overcome Si Jiahui, continued his exhilarating progress as he soared into a 6-2 lead ahead of their resumption later on Sunday.

Full report on the afternoon session:

Luca Brecel dominates opening session of Crucible final against Mark Selby

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 2-6 Brecel

16:11 , Lawrence Ostlere

That’s a phenomenal first session by Luca Brecel. He has made this World Championship final look like he’s playing in his local club, performing with almost reckless abandon at times, and right now Selby has no answer to his opponent’s potting prowess.

Mark Selby takes on a pot as Luca Brecel watches on (PA)
Mark Selby takes on a pot as Luca Brecel watches on (PA)
Brecel at the table during the World Championship final (PA)
Brecel at the table during the World Championship final (PA)
Selby contemplates a shot during the opening session (PA)
Selby contemplates a shot during the opening session (PA)

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 2-6 Brecel

15:58 , Lawrence Ostlere

So smooth and composed by Brecel, who manoeuvres the white around the table with apparent ease to take the frame as Selby watches on. Brecel will take a four-frame lead into tonight’s second session.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 2-5 Brecel

15:53 , Lawrence Ostlere

Selby gets the first few points on the board before missing a tricky red, and now Brecel is at the table. He pots red and black, then goes up the table to baulk to sweep up a couple of reds which ran loose. A good start, and this is a real chance.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 2-5 Brecel

15:47 , Lawrence Ostlere

Selby has to fight for just about every ball of his 62-point break, but then misses a relatively straightforward black to let Brecel back to the table needing a couple of snookers. Brecel seems frustrated, and he quickly gives up. That’s Selby’s frame, and there will be one more to wrap up this session.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 1-5 Brecel

15:39 , Lawrence Ostlere

Mark Selby gets a first look in this seventh frame, but he’s having to work hard with the pink down by the black spot making things awkward.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 1-5 Brecel

15:32 , Lawrence Ostlere

After a long, draining safety battle, Selby leaves the thinnest of snicks and Brecel takes it to pot the blue and clinch the frame. What a start to his first final by the Belgian, who is playing a thrilling brand of attacking snooker and holding his own in the safety exchanges too.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 1-4 Brecel

15:22 , Lawrence Ostlere

Selby comes unstuck trying to get from brown to blue and – with the scores at Selby 49-66 Brecel – a safety battle ensues on the blue. Every frame is crucial, of course, but this feels like a particularly significant moment in this opening session...

Mark Selby takes on a pot as Luca Brecel watches on (PA)
Mark Selby takes on a pot as Luca Brecel watches on (PA)

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 1-4 Brecel

15:18 , Lawrence Ostlere

Brecel can’t quite finish the job, though, and he lets Selby back to the table. The four-time champion puts away the last couple of reds and begins sweeping up the colours – he needs them all, and the pink is currently safe on the side cushion.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 1-4 Brecel

15:12 , Lawrence Ostlere

Selby then loses position after screwing off the black into the wrong red, and leaving himself a very tricky cut to the middle pocket which hits the near jaw. Brecel comes back to the table trailing by three points, 30-27. He buries a beautiful red to get started.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 1-4 Brecel

15:08 , Lawrence Ostlere

And yet, Brecel slightly loses control of the cue ball and misses a red using the rest – after his rest skills were given a big intro by John Virgo on commentary – and Mark Selby comes to the table with the balls well spread.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 1-4 Brecel

15:06 , Lawrence Ostlere

Wow, what a couple of shots these are. Luca Brecel first pots a red with a clever double across the middle of the table, then slams home the brown and top-spins the cue ball off one cushion into the pack to get himself on a red. The brown was absolutely cracked into the middle, a phenomenal pot.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 1-4 Brecel

15:01 , Lawrence Ostlere

Selby doesn’t get the snooker he requires, and Brecel puts away the final red with a long thin cut to restore his three-frame lead.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 1-3 Brecel

14:57 , Lawrence Ostlere

Brecel does indeed rack up a score and has 71 points on the board when the break ends – Mark Selby comes back to the table needing snookers.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 1-3 Brecel

14:50 , Lawrence Ostlere

Brecel tries to pot a long red to the green pocket and misses to leave Selby a tempting one that requires a little swerve of the cue ball to navigate the route between blue and green – Selby boldy attempts it, and misses, and Brecel is left with a simple red to begin a potentially telling break in this fifth frame.

World Snooker Championship final: Selby 1-3 Brecel

14:45 , Lawrence Ostlere

The players are back out on the Crucible floor. Selby pots a long red but isn’t on a colour, and a safety exchange begins.

World Snooker Championship final

14:38 , Lawrence Ostlere

Is Selby feeling a hangover from that epic semi-final battle with Mark Allen?

Mark Selby leaves it late to seal place in world final

World Snooker Championship final

14:35 , Lawrence Ostlere

We join the action at the first mid-session interval, and it has been a blistering start by Luca Brecel. A break of 77 quickly polished off the first frame, and he put on a flowing 90 to make it 3-0 before Selby snatched the last after a missed red by Brecel – pretty much his only mistep of the four frames. So it’s Selby 1-3 Brecel, first to 18, and it’s all to play for.

World Snooker Championship final

14:28 , Lawrence Ostlere

Mark Selby and Luca Brecel are battling to become the 2023 snooker world champion at the Crucble Theatre.

Selby saw off Mark Allen in a slugfest on Saturday night while Brecel pulled off a stunning comeback to knock out China’s Si Jiahui.

Selby has four world titles to his name and could become only the fourth player in the Crucible era to win a fifth, following in the path of Steve Davis, Stephen Hendry and Ronnie O’Sullivan. A fifth crown would cement Selby as one of the greats of the game, but standing in his way is the supremely talented Belgian Brecel, who at 28 is starting to find the best form his career. Brecel despatched the pre-tournament favourite O’Sullivan in the quarter-finals and his confidence looks bullet-proof as he takes on the famously gritty Selby.

World Snooker Championship final

14:25 , Lawrence Ostlere

Follow all the latest updates from the Crucible.