UK Championship: Judd Trump reaches third round with 6-1 win over Mei Xiwen

Judd Trump

Judd Trump maintained his quest of holding all three Triple Crown events simultaneously with a 6-1 win over Mei Xiwen in the UK Championship.

Trump, 30, claimed his maiden World title at Sheffield’s Crucible Theatre in May after winning the Masters in January.

The world number one made frame-winning runs of 105, 93, 86, 68 and 51, as Mei knocked in a superb 127 clearance.

“I did not feel great out there. I struggled a bit today,” Trump said.

“When I won the World Championship, it was a massive weight lifting off my shoulders.

“To win the Masters and World Championships together gave me the mental strength to go out and stamp my authority on the sport.

“It’s taken to the age of 29 to dedicate myself to the sport and really push on for the next 10 or 15 years or however long I can play to the best of my ability.”

Two-time champion Ding Junhui beat Michael Georgiou 6-2 to progress to the third round.

The Chinese player, who lifted the trophy in 2005 and 2009, has endured a difficult season with three first-round defeats but compiled breaks of 100, 70 and 50 to go through.

Trump aiming for rare feat

Should Trump and Ronnie O’Sullivan both progress through the tournament, they would meet in next Sunday’s final.

The pair met in the previous Northern Ireland Open event, which Trump won for the 14th ranking title of his career, and the tour’s form player has claimed a further two ranking title triumphs this season but was beaten in the invitational Champions of Champions event.

Renowned for his cue power, some of Trump’s potting against China’s Mei was outrageous, including powering a brown into the middle pocket, screwing back off the baulk cushion for the cue ball to roll down the table.

He realised his potential by winning the world title last season and is now aiming to achieve a unique feat by occupying all three blue riband events at the same time.

The last time a player held all three in the same year was 1996 – being the legendary Scot Stephen Hendry – while Mark Williams was the last to clutch all three in the same season in 2002-03.

Steve Davis is the only other player to manage the accomplishment, with O’Sullivan not succeeding in doing so to date during his illustrious career.

Trump said: “After I started the season well, it has been something I have looked at and a lot of people have mentioned it. It is such a rare feat and would be unbelievable.

“Hendry last did it over 20 years ago so it just goes to show how hard it is to do. If I can get achievements in that bracket then at the end of my career I can be mentioned alongside the likes of them.

“It does not come around too often and this chance may never happen again. Ronnie has never done it so it shows how tough it is.

“You have to play your absolute best in these big events and it is something I have worked towards. Hopefully I have have the confidence and mental strength to do it.”

Trump will be confident of his chances in the next round, coming up against tour rookie Louis Heathcote or 54-year-old Nigel Bond.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

BBC Sport – Snooker

Leave a Reply