'Unstoppable' Trump wins first world title

Judd Trump lifting the trophy after winning the snooker world title at the Crucible Theatre on Monday.
Judd Trump lifting the trophy after winning the snooker world title at the Crucible Theatre on Monday.PHOTO: DPA

LONDON • England's Judd Trump said he would find it difficult to top his performance after beating John Higgins 18-9 to win the snooker World Championship final in commanding style on Monday.

Trump won his maiden world title to join the list of players to have completed a career Grand Slam after winning the UK Championship (2011) and Masters (this year).

It also saw him become the first snooker player to win £1 million (S$1.78 million) in a single season.

"I've worked so hard for this. It was an amazing final," he told the BBC. "It will be hard to top that, if I ever can.

"I can't put it into words how well I played. That's what you've got to do to beat John, he's one of the greatest to play the game."

Leading 12-5 overnight, he kept up the pressure with three century breaks in the afternoon session, taking the total count for the match to 11 - a record since the event moved to the Crucible Theatre in 1977.

The 29-year-old, beaten by Higgins in the 2011 final when the Scot won the last of his four titles, went into the evening needing two more frames for the title which he polished off in 22 minutes.

It was the biggest margin in a final since Higgins beat Shaun Murphy by the same score in 2009.

Defeat meant Higgins had now lost the last three Crucible finals.

But, while he felt keenly disappointed in going close in his losses to Mark Selby (18-15) in 2017 and Mark Williams (18-6) last year, Higgins, 43, had no reason to reproach himself after coming up against "an unstoppable machine".

"I was the lucky one, I didn't have to pay for a ticket," said a sporting Higgins to laughter from a packed crowd as he paid tribute to Trump.

Trump's first press conference as champion finished with a query about how he planned to spend the £500,000 winner's cheque.

He said: "Not yet but, when it hits my bank account, I think I'll go a bit wild." AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, REUTERS, THE GUARDIAN

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 08, 2019, with the headline ''Unstoppable' Trump wins first world title'. Print Edition | Subscribe