Defending champion Judd Trump admitted Starbucks and the road home was on his mind when he trailed Barry Hawkins 5-1, but he staged a stunning fightback to win 6-5 and reach the BildBet German Masters final.
The Ace in the Pack lifted the title 12 months ago in Berlin, when he defeated Neil Robertson 9-6 in the final. World number one Trump will face either Jack Lisowski or Tom Ford in tomorrow’s final. If he were to win and pick up the £80,000 top prize, he would become the first ever player to successfully defend the German Masters.
Triple Crown winner Trump has enjoyed an extraordinary season so far, he’s notched up three ranking titles and has now reached six finals from a possible nine.
It had looked as if Hawkins was set to coast to victory this evening. He was in complete control when breaks of 101, 53, 55 and 140 helped him to a 5-1 advantage.
At that point the highest break Trump had been able to muster was 46. However, he sprang into life with three consecutive century runs of 131, 131 and 100 to reduce his arrears to 5-4.
Hawkins then had an opportunity to clinch the tie, but missed a routine red on 30. Trump stepped in with a steely run of 67 to take the match to a decider. In a hard fought, 45-minute frame, it was 20-time ranking event winner Trump who eventually crossed the line and clinched his place in the final.
Trump said: “I’m very proud of the way I dug in. It would have been easy to give up. At times I was questioning what drink I was going to get from Starbucks on the way home. You just have to put that to the back of your mind. It is so easy to give up. Something clicked at 5-1.
“I’m in the tournament and I shouldn’t be. I’ve got a free shot at it. The way I’ve played the last couple of seasons, I don’t put any pressure on myself and enjoy my snooker. Even when I’m losing 5-1, I just try to give it my best shot. If it happens, it happens. If it doesn’t, I look at it as a good thing and motivation for the next tournament.
“I think it will be a close game between Jack and Tom. Jack will obviously be a big favourite, but that can sometimes be difficult when you are coming through. Tom Ford knows he has never lost to Jack before. He is probably looking at this tournament that if he was ever going to win one then now is as good a time as any.”