Snooker: Davis delights as Crucible secures world event until 2015

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Steve Davis yesterday welcomed the announcement of a new five-year deal that will see the World Championship played at The Crucible until 2015.

"The World Championship is The Crucible," the six-times winner said yesterday. "The Crucible is like Wimbledon, it's the dream. It's the holy grail of snooker. Whilst there will always be the criticism that we could go to a bigger venue, you can't throw away history. You'd be stupid to.

"Apologies to anyone in the theatrical world that feels cheated that their theatre has been taken over for a higher cause, but that's just the way it is.

"It's taken years to build up the tournament's reputation here. If you're a snooker player the dream is to play here."

Australia's Neil Robertson needs just two frames this afternoon to become the first overseas player for 30 years to play a Crucible final.

The four-time ranking event winner held a commanding 15-9 lead over Ali Carter, the 2008 finalist, after the penultimate session of their semi-final here last night.

Carter compiled breaks of 55 and 50 as he fought back from 14-7 down to give himself hope of a comeback, but it is Robertson who is in command having dominated with breaks of 48, 43, 116, 78 and 51 to maintain his lead.

Graeme Dott leads Mark Selby 10-6 in the other semi-final.