Judd Trump beats John Higgins to win World Snooker Championship
Juddernaut triumphs in record-breaking contest to claim £500,000 winners cheque
Last Updated: 07/05/19 10:48am
Judd Trump emerged triumphed from a high-quality contest with John Higgins to win his first ever World Snooker Championship title with an 18-9 success at The Crucible.
The 29-year-old, a winner of two ranking event titles this year along with the prestigious Masters crown, lost his only previous Crucible final to the Scot in 2011 but eight years on emerged triumphant in Sheffield.
Trump hit a record-equalling seven centuries and became the first player to earn £1m in a single season as he claimed the title in a sensational contest that saw a Crucible-record total of 11 hundreds for the final and took the tournament total to 100, breaking the previous best of 86.
It's now four defeats in World Championship finals for Higgins, second only to Jimmy White (6), and his third defeat to a third different opponent in the Sheffield showpiece in as many years.
But Monday night belonged to Trump, who finally fulfilled his potential in the sport's premier event.
"I've worked so hard for this, it was an amazing final," he told the crowd in his post-match interview.
"John is such a great player, I always seem to raise my game and still don't beat him. This is probably the best I've ever played in a major final - but I still didn't feel comfortable coming into tonight.
"I can't put it into words how well I played, that's what you've got to do to beat John - he is one of the greatest to play the game."
Trump's spectacular evening session on Saturday night, where he won seven of the eight frames to open up a 12-5 advantage, proved the deciding factor despite Higgins' best efforts.
"I was the lucky one, I didn't have to pay for a ticket," said Higgins.
"I was lucky to get nine frames. Good luck to him. This is the first of many I'm sure, he produced a standard that's incredible. I gave it everything but he was just unplayable."
The Scot started the afternoon session in breathtaking fashion, falling short of a maximum 147 after 15 reds and 14 blacks, including an outrageous double on the final red - but it was enough to take the opening frame and he added another to underline the skills that have taken him to four previous world titles.
However, Trump was able to compose himself to take the third frame of the afternoon, rattling in a typically classy break of 101 - a record breaking ninth of the final, beating the 12 set on two previous occasions in 2002 and 2013.
And he re-established his seven-frame advantage heading into the mid-session interval with a nerveless 71 to move within four frames of the title and another century from Trump, his sixth of the final, on their return kept alive the prospect of an afternoon victory.
But Higgins continued to chip away, winning the 23rd frame to ensure there would be an evening session before the pair split the final two frames of the afternoon, fittingly finished with the 100th century of the tournament which came from Trump with a brilliant 104.
And he returned for the evening session with little fuss. A break of 94 took him to the brink of the title which he wrapped up when, despite breaking down on 62, he was embraced by Higgins.
"I had to go away and rebuild my game," added Higgins. "Thanks to my brother, he's been a massive help. I think he's one of the reasons I've done so well.
"My dad is the biggest snooker fan in the world, it's inspiring to see his motivation. There have been some tough times and bad losses but inspiration to win it for him is what's got me through."
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