Judd Trump wins the 2021 Champion of Champions

Judd Trump beat John Higgins by 10-4 yesterday evening to win the Champion of Champions for the first time. Congratulations to him.

Here is the report by WST:

Trump Crowned Champion Of Champions

Credit: Taka G Wu/Matchroom Multi Sport

Judd Trump produced a superb display to beat John Higgins 10-4 in the final of the Cazoo Champion of Champions in Bolton, winning the event for the first time in his career.

Trump beat David Lilley and Ryan Day on Monday to move through the group stage, before dispatching Kyren Wilson 6-0 on Friday evening to set up a final clash with Higgins in front of a sell-out crowd.

The Ace in the Pack lifted the Cazoo Champion of Champions trophy for the first time in three trips to the final, along with earning a cheque for £150,000.

The afternoon session began at pace, as Higgins pressed into a 3-0 lead. Trump responded emphatically though, taking five frames on the spin to head into the evening session 5-4 up.

Trump only lost five frames all week and started the evening brilliantly with a break of 74 to stretch his lead to 6-4. He then added the 11th frame, before a dramatic 12th.  Higgins was in a commanding position, but his break stopped at 47. Trump edged a brief safety battle and a contribution of 51 allowed him to move two away from the title.

World number two Trump has faced disappointment twice in the 2014 and 2019 finals, but history wasn’t going to repeat itself with a run of 68 in the penultimate frame putting him on the brink and leaving Higgins without a point for a third frame on the night. He went on to complete the victory and secure the title with a break of 59.

Trump said: “It’s an amazing feeling to get this one under my belt. The crowd here has been amazing for a new venue. There’s been the support has been superb for every player. We both felt that the noise and it was amazing. It was so exciting to play in a final. John has been amazing all season. I think he was in control early on but missed one or two he wouldn’t normally miss. Any win against John is incredible. He was always someone I admired when I was growing up.

There have been times when I was first coming through where I’ve been 4-0 up, 7-2 up, and every time he comes back and beats me. There was a bad one in Shanghai which I will never forget, but it’s put me in the position that I am today. I still learn and I am still willing to learn from him. I have the utmost respect for John.

Higgins, who has been runner-up in all of the last three events, said: “That’s obviously an achievement but you want to win events. It’s not a great feeling, I can hold my hands up and say I’ve lost to three unbelievable champions.

I thought Judd was awesome. If I am being hyper critical. When I went 3-1 up, I had a couple of chances that you’ve got to capitalise on against somebody as good as Judd, but I went walkabout for three or four frames. Judd just grew and grew in strength and then he just blitzed me tonight. Far too good.

It was a strange match to be honest. John started strongly, but after losing the last frame before the first MSI, he seemed to have lost his concentration in the process as well. Judd stepped in and took five on the bounce. When John managed to win the last frame of the afternoon session, I thought “Ok we have a match on our hands”. When they resumed however, it was completely one-sided. There were 9 breaks over 50, 7 by Judd and 2 by John, but the highest break was a mere 74.

One of the commentators reflected that this was an indication of the unusual and rather “slow” conditions, not the best for break-building. All week, an unusual number of “pack splits” were “unproductive” with the pack staying rather compact and/or the white getting stuck.

Phil Haigh gave a good account of the match and reported someting about Judd reaction that is not mentioned in the above report:

So excited to play in a final, it felt like I’d been on a drought, everyone kept saying I hadn’t won a tournament for a while.

To get this one under my belt early in the season and hopefully I can take some momentum from here. Everyone seems to say I only win little events so I wonder if this classes as a big one.

This, in my opinion, only shows that, despite all his successes, Judd is still insecure and desperate for recognition.






5 thoughts on “Judd Trump wins the 2021 Champion of Champions

  1. As far as I’m concerned, it is a lucrative invitational, which, however, was fun to watch until this year when I just cannot come to terms with the trashy outfit (the other “atmosphere enhancing” things I did not see due to other engagements and no need to see them now either). I know Ronnie loves it due to the one-table setup and called it a “numpty-free zone”. which must be taken with reservations, Neil Robertson called it the 4th major 2 years ago, but then he fought very hard for the victory and it was an exaggeration IMO.

    In Trump’s favour I can say he did destroy Kyren Wilson whom I regard a reliable Trump-beater and had very high hopes for. 😦 Otherwise Trump also must know that as long as he only has one or even two (perish the thought!) world championships, he won’t be regarded one of the true greats, no matter how many best.of-7 Gibraltars he collects, or how WST is bigging him up. Of course he is looking for recognition and seems to look for love too, but as far as I’m concerned, he is doing it in a rather irritating way.

  2. Yes but virtually all players are insecure and desperate for recognition – it’s very exposed playing in front of millions of viewers.

    It was always likely that John Higgins would run out of steam, after the weeks he’s had, and the draining semi-final. But it is indeed true that Trump had an easy path to this title. That’s partly a consequence of the tournament structure. Some Champions (World Seniors’ and Shoot-out) aren’t quite as strong as other Champions. Paradoxically, the draw could be evened up by including champions of lesser tournaments (where’s the World Junior Champion or Women’s Champion?), rather than by ranking.

    Having said that, Dave Lilley played in his second tournament within a week on the Q Tour, and won convincingly. There will also be a new professional, the Brazilian Victor Sarkis, if he takes up his card for winning the Pan American Championship.

    • David Lilley is the perfect illustration of the problem snooker currently faces: the gap between amateurs and pro is widening and has been widening for some time already. David is too good for the amateur circuit and not quite good enough for the main tour.
      Regarding Trump’s route to the title, he indeed had it easy, because of his draw AND because of his schedule. I’m sure Matchroom was delighted though as they seem to put him and his ideas forward.

      • Trump seems to have a very relationship with Emily Frazer, the matchroom director. Maybe there is more.

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