Mark Allen displayed poise and purpose in beating John Higgins in the opening round of last season's Wembley Masters but will have to play even better to beat him in Telford today.
Higgins is a man on a mission: back on TV and playing every bit as well as he was prior to his suspension.
He has come through two tough games against fellow Scots Graeme Dott and Stephen Maguire, raising his game at the end of each.
It's ten years since Higgins won the UK Championship title but he is clearly focused on ending that drought.
A word on Neil Robertson. Although it probably had no bearing on his defeat, he was still in bed 15 minutes before the match was due to start because he believed it began an hour later, at 1.30pm.
Nobody in the sport needs a proper manager more than Neil right now. Even if it had been a 1.30 start, this was hardly the ideal preparation.
There's no disputing his talents on the table but somebody needs to ensure he is where he's supposed to be at the appropriate time because this has happened too often.
He's less John Spencer, more Frank Spencer.
Speaking of farce, there was a delay last night when the arena scoreboard failed when Murphy was on a break leading 8-7.
When they finally resumed he immediately missed but still went on to win 9-7.
Mark Joyce gave a very good account of himself but Mark Williams, as he so often has in the past when he's not playing his best, found a way to win.