Selby Shines As Barry Feels The Pinch

Mark Selby came from 3-1 down to beat Barry Pinches 4-3 in the final of Star Xing Pai Players Tour Championship event two.

Leicester’s Selby played exceptional snooker throughout the tournament at the World Snooker Academy in Sheffield, making eight centuries in seven matches. Two of those came in the last two frames of the final as the Pokerstars.com Masters champion finished in style.

Norwich cueman Pinches won three consecutive frames to go 3-1 ahead, compiling runs of 72, 79 and 95. But Selby claimed the fifth then fired in 133 and 116 as his opponent failed to score a point in the last two.

“I played really well throughout the event,” Selby told worldsnooker.com. “The tables and conditions were very good and the standard was high. It was a strong field and there were some shock results which shows the quality of the amateur players.

“In the final I missed a black off its spot in the second frame and without doing anything else wrong I was 3-1 down. But I stuck in there and managed to turn it around.”

Selby is renowned for bringing his best to the big stage, particularly at Wembley Arena where he has won twice since 2008. But he has also now proved he can thrive at the other end of the scale. “There’s no room for spectators here so it’s only been (manager) Mukesh and one or two other people watching,” added the world No 9.

“In a way that takes the pressure off – it’s very different to playing in front of 2,000 people. You have to treat it like a pratice match, even though these events are important because of the ranking points. It’s always nice to win any tournament and it’s something to build on for me.”

Selby becomes the second player ranked among the world’s top ten to win a PTC event, No 8 Mark Williams having won the first. Selby tops the PTC Order of Merit after two of the 12 events. The top 24 on the final Order of Merit go through to the televised finals. The next event runs from August 6 to 8.