Judd Trump wins the 2020 Players Championship

Judd Trump beat Yan Bingtao by 10-4 in Southport yesterday, to win his fifth ranking title of the season, equalling Hendry, Selby, Ding and Ronnie.

Congratulations Judd Trump!

Here are the reports by WST

Afternoon session

Judd Trump seized command of his Coral Players Championship final with Yan Bingtao, leading 6-2 after the first session.

The Ace in the Pack is searching for a record equalling fifth ranking title this season. He’s already notched up victories at the International Championship, World Open, Northern Ireland Open and the German Masters.

Yan won his maiden ranking silverware at the season opening Riga Masters. However, he will have to win eight of the remaining 11 frames this evening if he is to pick up this week’s £125,000 top prize.

Trump dramatically stole this afternoon’s first frame. He required a snooker to tie, but when Yan left him a free ball on the final red he was able to craft a break of 37 and steal on the black.

Yan restored parity, before World Champion Trump charged clear of his counterpart. Breaks of 75, 122, 50 and 75 helped him to five frames on the bounce to lead 6-1. China’s Yan kept himself in with a chance by claiming the last frame of the session with a fine 95 break.

They will return this evening at 7pm, with the first to 10 frames taking home the title.

Evening  session

World Champion Judd Trump beat Yan Bingtao 10-4 to win the Coral Players Championship in Southport.

Victory sees world number one Trump equal the record for most ranking victories in a single campaign. He now shares the record with Stephen Hendry, Ding Junhui, Mark Selby and Ronnie O’Sullivan. Trump has three events left to claim the honour for himself, with the Gibraltar Open, Coral Tour Championship and World Championship to come.

It’s the second Players Championship title of Trump’s career, he beat Marco Fu 10-8 in the 2017 final. Today’s win sees Trump pocket the £125,000 top prize and extends his lead at the top of the one-year list. He’s amassed an impressive £656,500 in ranking competitions this season.

Trump also leads the 2020 Coral Cup. The player who accumulates the most prize money over the three-event series will win a £100,000 bonus. This evening’s victory moves him £32,500 ahead of Neil Robertson with just the Coral Tour Championship to go.

The Ace in the Pack has now won 16 ranking titles in his career, leaving him in 8th position on the all-time winner’s list, just one behind Mark Selby. Remarkably 30-year-old Trump has been victorious in his last nine ranking finals and has not lost the title match at a ranking event since the 2017 Shanghai Masters, where he was runner-up to Ronnie O’Sullivan.

Yan leaves Southport with the consolation of the £50,000 runner-up prize. His performances throughout the season will be rewarded with a place at the elite eight-player Coral Tour Championship in Llandudno. This was the 20-year-old Chinese star’s second final of the campaign, having claimed his maiden ranking title at the Riga Masters.

Trump had already taken command of today’s encounter after an impressive showing in the afternoon session moved him 6-2 ahead.

When they came out this evening Yan summoned a strong start, as he attempted to turn up the heat on Trump. He fired in a break of 77 in the opener, before taking the second frame of the night to pull within two at 6-4.

However, Trump remained unaffected by Yan’s early fightback and quickly re-asserted his dominance as he sprinted for the line. Breaks of 108, 68 and 60 helped him to four frames in a row, which secured the 10-4 victory.

Bristolian Trump said: “I have three opportunities to get the record. I’ve put myself in a good position. I’ve already got five and already equalled it. If I could go one further and hold it on my own that would be nice. I just have to take it one step at a time. There are some major events left to come and if I can have a few runs I will be pleased.

“Yan is a bit more tactical than me. A lot of the frames were going a bit slow. I just tried to speed him up and go for a few shots. It was hard to get momentum. There were spells where I played ok. I missed a few too many easy balls for my liking. In the future he is going to be a tough player to beat, so it is nice to get the wins against him while he is still young.

“Mark Selby was world number one for a long time and that is what I want to be. I want to be winning these events for four or five years and not letting anyone get close to me. I’m in a good position to hold the world number one spot for a little longer after winning today and hopefully I can really kick on and put in a good run at the Crucible.”

Yan said: “I beat three of the best players in the world this week. I am quite proud of myself. I just tried to enjoy myself against Judd today.

“I am looking forward to the Tour Championship. To qualify means I have done well this season and it is a reward for my good performances.”

Like him or not, Judd Trump is the best player in the world at the moment and he played very well yesterday again. The scoreline is harsh, but Yan can be proud of his achievements as well. He showed great battling qualities, as he had all week, and forced Trump’s respect. What I mean by the latter is that he showed Trump in this match that if he didn’t play the right shots, he, Yan, would take the opportunities and punish him. And we shouldn’t forget this: at the same age, 20, Judd Trump had won nothing in terms of ranking events, he even hadn’t reached a final. So, well done Yan! His time will come.

Will Judd Trump beat many records? Yes, probably. He doesn’t have anyone in his age group to challenge him, except maybe Ding, IF he gets back to his best, and they have about three times more tournaments to play in than the “Class of 92” had when they were the same age. So, if he is as good as they are/were he should beat all records. But we shall see…

Meanwhile … let’s have a look at some stats:

Mark Williams at 30: 15 ranking titles including 2 World titles, 2 UK titles  … and 2 Masters. First ranking win at 21.

John Higgins at 30: 17 ranking titles including 1 World title, 2 UK titles … and 1 Masters. First ranking win at 19.

Ronnie O’Sullivan at 30: 18 ranking titles including 2 World titles, 3 UK titles … and 2 Masters. First ranking win, the UK a major, at 17.

Those three were constantly in competition with each others, they were all born in 1975 and they didn’t have 20 tournaments per season to play in.

Judd Trump at 30: 16 ranking titles, including 1 World title, 1 UK title … and 1 Masters. First ranking win at 21.

So? Is he the best ever as some claim? As Ronnie said recently, let’s have this conversation in 10 years time.



2 thoughts on “Judd Trump wins the 2020 Players Championship

  1. It is but a safe bet he will break all the total records (ranking titles, tons and similar), spare the WC maybe and the triple crown total. He is 13 years younger than Ron, there are gazillion of tournaments like never before, and he has no competition in his age group, neither anyone younger in sight. It’s like Real Madrid playing the CL v EL teams only, for 10 years straight. Unbearable reality for me but what can I do, best forget about it.

  2. It was a comfortable victory, but not a demolition as we have seen in some other finals this season. Trump could easily have raised his level if he had needed to. Yan will get stronger, particularly in scoring where his touch still isn’t reliable on the big stage. Still, he’s almost certain to be seeded at the Crucible, one of the youngest to do so. He won’t be so disappointed to lose, as he knew he had very little chance and was surprised to have reached the final.

    They interviewed Yan via Victoria, which tends to confirm that the decision to do pre-recorded interviews came from his side.

    So Trump is confirmed as the best player in the world by some distance, with the occasional lapses. The challenges now are to win major tournaments repeatedly over time. There will be times in the future when his technique falters and he has to make some adjustments to stay at the top. How he copes with that will ultimately place him overall. But his ability to win frames from nowhere is probaly unprecedented.

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