Mark Selby beat Ronnie O’Sullivan in a nine-frame thriller at the Scottish Open and the Leicester potter hailed his opponent as the finest player to ever pick up a cue.

Two heavyweights of the snooker world went toe-to-toe in the quarter-finals under Glasgow’s Emirates Arena lights, with the world No.6 winning a pulsating final frame to book his place in the semi-finals on Saturday with a 5-4 triumph.

The victory ensured the three-time world champion qualified for the last four on his first visit to the competition since it became a Home Nations event in 2016, sending the Rocket home early as he heads into a break away from the table after withdrawing from the 2020 Dafabet Masters.

And the 16-time ranking event winner, popularly known as the Jester from Leicester, was delighted to beat a player who had achieved so much in the game.

“Ronnie is probably the best player to ever play our game, so competing with him in the biggest arena and on the main table is what you strive for as a player,” the 36-year-old said.

“You don’t know how long he’s going to carry on playing the game, so every time you do play him you need to cherish it.

“I’m over the moon with the win because I thought Ronnie played really well out there and didn’t take too many liberties.

“In the last few games sometimes he’s gone for shots that you just don’t expect him to go for and leaves everything, but I felt he respected me out there and played the right game, and it was good to come out on the winning side.

“There’s still a lot to work on, but I’ll come back here tonight and have a practice and see what happens.”

The Rocket came out of the blocks with great alacrity in compiling three majestic century breaks, being pegged back by the former world No.1 who then secured a compelling final frame.

And after a moment of ninth-frame panic for Selby where he jawed a routine black to leave O’Sullivan with a chance of victory, the Leicester man pulled through to edge over the line.

Reigning world champion Judd Trump was beaten by world No.12 David Gilbert in one of Friday evening’s quarter-finals, succumbing to a comprehensive 5-2 defeat after being out-cued by the 2019 Betfred World Championship semi-finalist.

The 2019 English Open runner-up was in majestic form in Glasgow, constructing a brilliant 142 to pick up his fourth ever victory over the world No.1 and book his place in his second ranking event semi-final of the season.

And world No.14 Jack Lisowski was another British player to progress into the last four, reaching his maiden semi-final of the term with a polished 5-3 victory - including a tournament-best break of 143 - over Thepchaiya Un-Nooh.

Watch the Scottish Open live on Eurosport, Eurosport Player and Quest with studio analysis from Ronnie O’Sullivan and Jimmy White