Last year's finalist Shaun Murphy was made to battle by Ricky Walden before eventually clinching his place in the quarter-finals of the Betfair Masters with a 6-4 victory.
Twelve months ago Murphy came close to lifting the trophy at Alexandra Palace before eventually being beaten by Australia's Neil Robertson in the final.
At one point on Tuesday evening the fourth seed looked like making rapid progress into the last eight of this year's event as he cruised into a 4-1 lead over Walden on the back of a break of 79 in the first frame and a brilliant 130 in the fifth.
However, Murphy failed to make the most of breaks in the 40s in the next two frames as Walden twice pegged him back to reduce the deficit to 4-3.
The Chester cueman then levelled things up at 4-4 with a contribution of 65 and looked to have the momentum as the contest became a best of three frames affair.
But Murphy roused himself to stop the rot as he took a scrappy ninth frame and then, despite letting his opponent back in after looking in command, did enough to close out the match in the tenth and will now face John Higgins.
Who will win the Betfair Masters?