Wednesday 7 December 2016

Trump fights back to see off Liang challenge

Phil Casey

Published 22/04/2016 | 02:30

Judd Trump of England celebrates victory during his first round match against Liang Wenbo of China on day six of the World Snooker Championship at The Crucible Theatre. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)
Judd Trump of England celebrates victory during his first round match against Liang Wenbo of China on day six of the World Snooker Championship at The Crucible Theatre. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)

Judd Trump produced a great escape to keep alive his hopes of a first World Championship title.

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At the tournament he regards as being "10 times bigger" than any other, Trump was in deep first-round trouble when he dropped the opening frame of the day to slide 7-3 behind against Liang Wenbo.

The 26-year-old had been off his game on Wednesday and it called for a champion's response to clamber out of danger.

Trump, who reached the 2011 Crucible final and was a semi-finalist last year, was up to the challenge and took seven of the next eight frames to win 10-8.

His victory tees up a tantalising second-round clash with Wenbo's fellow Chinese player Ding Junhui.

Trump admitted it was going against him at 7-3, but he was heartened by edging the next frame, and said: "Then I got some momentum and played some really good stuff.

Relaxed

"I took the balls really well, felt very confident, very relaxed under pressure. It seemed like when I had my back against the wall that's when I thrived. I played some real good snooker, just solid snooker. I wasn't forcing it really."

When he trailed 7-6 at the mid-session interval, Trump was working his way back into the match and tournament, but still tweeted from his dressing room: "Drinks on me later if I get out of jail here."

He might face a hefty bar bill, but he remains in the hunt for the £330,000 top prize. Trump lost 6-4 to Liang, a fellow left-hander, at the UK Championship in December, squandering a 4-1 lead, and calling the loss "embarrassing".

Last night, Kyren Wilson held his nerve to see off Joe Perry 10-9 in what was the outstanding match of the first round. Elsewhere, Ali Carter leads Alan McManus 5-3.

Irish Independent

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