Four days after lifting the trophy at the Cazoo Champion of Champions, Judd Trump was straight back into a winning groove at the Cazoo UK Championship as he thrashed David Lilley 6-1 in the first round.
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Trump lost just five frames in Bolton last week as he landed one of snooker’s biggest invitation titles, and insists he is ready for another deep run in York. He lost a dramatic final 10-9 to Neil Robertson in this event last year and hopes to go one better this time and double his tally of UK titles having lifted the trophy ten years ago.
Trump has reached the UK Championship final three times
“It was draining, winning the event last week,” said Trump, who made top breaks of 100 and 132 against Lilley. “But I’ve had a good couple of days practice and I’m prepared for another big tournament. I want to keep my momentum going and enjoy playing snooker.
“I have been playing well all season and I felt it was just a matter of time before I won a title. Getting over the line last week gives me extra belief. To have a title under my belt already this season, I can play with more freedom.”
Neil Robertson and Shaun Murphy have been knocked out this week so Trump was relieved to make it to the last 64, where he will meet Chris Wakelin. “Every year there are a few shocks, one or two of the top players go out,” added the world number two from Bristol. “There are a lot of great players lower down and they are capable of beating anyone. You need these FA Cup-style storylines. When I saw John Astley celebrating earlier, he was just so happy to win. It means a lot to every player.”
As for his next opponent, Trump added: “Chris should have beaten me in the World Championship a few years ago. He likes the big stage, he has beaten Mark Selby before. He will be more than up for this game.”
Stuart Bingham came through a tense 59-minute decider to beat tour rookie Dean Young 6-5. Scotland’s Young came from 4-1 and 5-3 down to 5-5, only for 2015 World Champion Bingham to take the last frame on the colours.
“I missed a lot of easy balls and Dean played well to come back,” said Bingham. “I held my nerve to get over the line and that gives me confidence, it could kick-start my season.”
Andy Hicks and Liang Wenbo were pulled off at 5-5 earlier today, and when they returned tonight, former UK Championship semi-finalist Hicks finished the match in style with a tremendous 135 total clearance. He will now meet Michael Holt, who won a knock-out match for the first time this season by beating Zak Surety 6-4.
Leeds potter Peter Lines top scored with 113 in a 6-3 win over Ryan Day while Sam Craigie beat three-time finalist Ken Doherty by the same scoreline. BetVictor Northern Ireland Open champion Mark Allen scored a 6-2 victory over Michael Judge.