STUNNING TRUMP INTO DAQING FINAL
World Champion Judd Trump produced a dominant display to defeat Mark Selby 9-4 and reach the final of the International Championship in Daqing.
Trump, 29, now progresses to the final in his first appearance on the professional circuit since lifting a maiden World Championship title in May.
The Ace In the Pack will go on to face either defending champion Mark Allen or Shaun Murphy in Sunday’s final over the best of 19 frames for the £175,000 top prize.
Trump, who won the inaugural International Championship back in 2012, has already secured a significant accolade this week having ensured his return to the world number one spot, following his last 16 defeat of Joe Perry.
Selby, a two-time winner of the International Championship, was deposed as world number one by Ronnie O’Sullivan, having held the position for four years consecutively.
The opening session saw Trump emerge with a 5-3 advantage, despite having trailed 3-1. A blistering display this evening allowed Trump to pull clear and ease to the line.
Trump produced an imperious spell of break building, firing in 440 unanswered points to leave three-time World Champion Selby trailing in his wake. That included consecutive breaks of 108, 97 and 116 this evening, as he claimed the first three frames to move 8-3 up.
Breaks of 50 and 59 helped Selby to take the match to the mid-session, but he still trailed 8-4. When they returned Trump swiftly finished off the match to run out a 9-4 victor.
Trump said: “Tonight was good. It was probably somewhere near how I was playing to win the World Championship. That is what you have to do to win tournaments nowadays. It is very pleasing to get off to a good start after quite a long break. I’ve had three months with no tournaments and even though I’ve practised I still wasn’t match sharp. So to play as well as I have I am very happy with it.
“After winning the World Championship it is very easy to get into bad habits. Everyone wants to beat you as well so they are going to be raising their games. Everything can be a downward spiral. To pick yourself up again takes a lot of hard work. At my age, I want to win everything I go into so I am working very hard.”
Afterwards, Selby admitted that Trump can put players under a unique pressure that other greats of the sport cannot create.
Selby said: “Judd plays a different game. Some of the balls he goes for and gets are unbelievable. Because he is such a good cueist and is so confident he believes he is going to get them. When you are playing guys like John Higgins or Ronnie O’Sullivan you can play safe knowing they aren’t going to go for a certain shot. Nothing is safe when you are playing Judd.”