Judd Trump won group four of the BetVictor Championship League Invitational, after beating John Higgins 3-1 in a high scoring final.
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Trump comfortably booked his spot in the play-offs by winning four of his six group matches, with most of his work being done on day one with three superb wins.
His play-off match against Mark Selby proved to be an absorbing one, which came down to the wire. The Ace in the Pack scored a run of 122, the highest of the match, in the opener. It came down to a deciding frame, where a break of 50 was enough to see Trump through 3-2.
Higgins earned his place in the group final thanks to a 3-1 win over Robert Milkins. The Scot crafted breaks of 99, 121 and 141 on his way to the win.
Trump flew out the blocks in the final, scoring back-to-back centuries in the opening two frames. The Bristolian then looked on course for a third consecutive century, before breaking down on 53. Higgins showed his class by clearing up with a break of 77 to cut Trump’s lead to one at 2-1.
Trump wasn’t to be denied and did make his third century of the tie in the fourth, a contribution of 102, to wrap up an impressive 3-1 victory.
Speaking afterwards, Trump said: “I started well this week. I kind of knew I was through after day one, which made it hard to approach my remaining group games with the same intensity. I gave people a few chances I probably shouldn’t have.
“I think it’s fair to say Mark let me off the hook in the semi final, he probably should’ve won 3-1. I got through it though and played really well in the final.
“It’s great practice, especially before the Masters next week. There was some good snooker in there and I did feel really relaxed out there. I didn’t have any pressure on myself this week and really felt back to myself so hopefully it’s a good omen for 2023.
“It’s always a privilege to play John Higgins in any final and I’m obviously delighted to be in the next stage of this event.”