Hawkins impressed during a 6-3 win over his fellow Englishman in the last eight at Alexandra Palace – his first win over Selby since the 2013 Shanghai Masters quarter-final.
It also ended the world number one’s hopes of adding the Masters to his world and UK titles won over the past seven months.
“It is one of the best wins of my career, probably up there with beating Ronnie (O’Sullivan) at the Crucible last year,” said Hawkins. “I feel quite happy with my game at the moment. I was pleased with the way I stayed strong today.
“I bounced back well after missing a couple of sore frames. They can be tough to take, but I recovered strongly.”
Hawkins will face Ding Junhui or Joe Perry in the last four on Saturday night a year after losing 10-1 to O’Sullivan in the final here.
“Hopefully, I can get to the final, and show up a bit better than I did last year,” said Hawkins. “To lose 10-1, I was completely demoralised.”
Hawkins could face O’Sullivan again if he wins his semi-final and the Rocket overcomes Marco Fun in his last four clash on Saturday.
“I definitely played Ronnie last year rather than the table,” he added.
“But I felt I learned from that experience as I showed by beating him at the World Championship. This is a massive tournament, but I want to do well.”
Bristol Rovers have appointed Martyn Starnes as the Sky Bet League One club's new chief executive officer.