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Mark Allen v John Higgins: Prediction, Tips and Odds

Mark Allen and John Higgins clash in the first round of the Tour Championship and there is a quarter-final against Ding Junhui awaiting the winner.

The Tour Championship has been extended to the 12 highest ranked players on the one-year ranking list, previously eight, and that has set up a top-level first-round contest between Allen and Higgins. 

Allen has claimed the Players Championship, Scottish Open and Champion of Champions crowns this season and the Pistol will be hoping for more glory at the Manchester Central Convention Complex. 

Mark Allen v John Higgins

Higgins has reached six major semi-finals this term, but the Scot hasn’t been able to find the final push and collect a trophy. 

The Manchester matches are split over two sessions of play with games starting at 1pm and 7pm and the best-of-19-frames format means that two periods of play are needed to split the players. That’s a world away from the first-to-seven or first-to-nine-frame games that dominate the snooker tour and that has to be considered when trying to find Tour Championship winners. 

Mark Allen v John Higgins betting tips and predictions

John Higgins to win - 11/10

Allen has won six major titles in the last two seasons and the Antrim ace has become one of the most prolific winners on tour. The Northern Irishman has to be a serious contender in any event that he enters, but the extended-frame format of the Tour Championship makes it a different beast to many of the competitions on the snooker calendar. 

It’s the best-of-19-frame matches and two sessions throughout at the Manchester Central Convention Complex and the World Championship is one of the few events comparable with the Tour Championship in terms of match length. 

Allen reached the semi-finals at the Crucible last year, but the Northern Irishman had won only eight matches in the 11 years of World Championship competition prior to last season and he now takes on a long-format specialist in Higgins. 

The Pistol arrives in Manchester after a trophy-happy campaign, but Allen was beaten by Daniel Wells in the first round of the recent World Open and there have also been early exits in this season’s European Masters, British Open, English Open, Northern Ireland Open, International Championship, UK Championship and World Grand Prix. 

The Antrim ace has an all-or-nothing profile and it could be a barren return in the first round of the Tour Championship. 

Higgins has reached two quarter-finals and a final in his three previous appearances in this event and the Scot is a master of performing to a high level in long-format matches. 

The Wizard of Wishaw is a four-time world champion and the Scot has also reached four further Crucible finals. 

The 48-year-old hasn’t added to his stacked trophy cabinet this term, but the four-time world champion has reached six major semi-finals and there is little to suggest that the Wizard of Wishaw is a faded force. 

At the prices, Higgins looks a value play to get the better of Allen and progress to the quarter-finals. 

Under 16.5 frames - 8-11

The total frames line has been set at 16.5 for this best-of-19 first-round contest, but given the hit-or-miss nature of Allen’s performances this season, it could pay to get short of that mark. 

Higgins was a 5-2 winner when clashing with the Pistol in the Welsh Open in February and the Scot got the better of the Northern Irishman by the same scoreline when they met in the German Masters earlier that month. 

A similarly dominant display from Higgins could be on the cards in Manchester and going under the total frames line looks the best way to support the Wizard of Wishaw. 

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Read Mark Allen v John Higgins: How to watch, TV channel, head-to-head stats & start time on site

Mark Allen v John Higgins Odds

Mark Allen - 8/11
John Higgins - 11/10

View the full market and more odds for Mark Allen v John Higgins on site

This article was written by a partner sports writer via Spotlight Sports Group. All odds displayed on this page were correct at the time of writing and are subject to withdrawal or change at any time.

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