STUART BINGHAM won his third title of the season by beating World No 1 Judd Trump 7-2 in the final of the PartyPoker.com Premier League in Grimsby.
The Basildon potter is in the best form of his career having already won two Asian Players Tour Championship events this season, and he became the ninth ever winner of the Premier League with a superb display of break-building against Trump.
Bingham went undefeated through the competition and collected a total prize haul of £78,000, with £50,000 for the title, £23,000 for frames won and centuries in the round robin section, plus £5,000 for the top break prize, a 135.
The Essex man may have been one of the least fancied of the ten players at the start of the competition in August, but his outstanding performances throughout gave him the top prize.
“This means so much, it’s unbelievable and to pick up this trophy means the world,” said Bingham before pausing as the emotion of the moment became too much.
“I was fortunate that Judd wasn’t getting the nudges and I was getting the run, but when your name’s on the trophy, it’s on the trophy.” he added.
Things started well for Trump as he took the opening frame. He only needed one chance and made an 83 from it. In the next, Bingham opened the scoring with a superb long red, swerving around the green from baulk, and from there he compiled a run of 82 to level things.
There was more of the same in the next as Bingham ran in a fluent 100 to move into a 2-1 lead and he added a scrappy fourth with well worked breaks of 31 and 32. Runs of 53 and 55 helped him make it 4-1 andf he made it five frames in a row with a cool 61.
Trump steadied the ship in the seventh with an excellent 101, but Bingham soon regained the initiative with a 71 to go 6-2 ahead.
Frame nine came down to the final black and Trump took on a difficult long pot, but missed his target and left the black over a centre pocket for Bingham to pot it and clinch the title.
A magnanimous Trump said: “The whole weekend I’ve struggled. I’ve played a lot recently but to be fair, Stuart played the best throughout the tournament and there was only one winner. Things didn’t quite go my way today. They did for Stuart and he totally deserved his victory.”
Trump can console himself with a runners-up prize of £44,000: £25,000 for coming second and £19,000 for his frame wins and centuries in the league stage.
After it was pointed out to Bingham that he would be joining names like Davis, Hendry, O’Sullivan and White on the trophy, he joked: “I feel sorry for those guys but it’s amazing to have my name on same trophy!
“This has been Ronnie’s for the last ten years and I’ve practised with him a lot so thanks to him. The tournament suits me as my style of play as I just get on with it, and it’s been an unbelievable time.”
In the semi-finals on Saturday, Bingham edged out John Higgins 5-4 while Trump beat Neil Robertson by the same scoreline.
The Final: Judd Trump 2 – 7 Stuart Bingham
83-0 (Trump 83), 0-82 (Bingham 82), 8-100 (Bingham 100), 33-76 (Bingham 31, 32), 9-116 (55, 53), 5-74 (Bingham 61), 101-0 (Trump 101), 9-115 (Bingham 40, 71), 54-58.