We're Joined By The Wilsons! | 2023 Duelbits Tour Championship

Wilson Targets Lommel Run

Kyren Wilson produced some stunning snooker on his way to the Yushan World Open final and he is hoping to carry his momentum on to Belgium for next week’s European Masters.

The Warrior will travel to Lommel with high hopes, despite losing 10-3 to Ding Junhui on Sunday in the Yushan showpiece match. We caught up with Wilson as he prepared for the European Masters and this week’s International Championship qualifying…

Kyren, it was a tremendous week for you in Yushan even though you didn’t quite come through in the final. Given the way you are playing, do you see next week’s European Masters as an opportunity for silverware?

“I think the non-stop nature of the tour means that when you do hit a purple patch, you have to make the most of it. It’s quite easy to go on a good run, but it is also easy to go on a bad one. I feel like I’m happy with my game at the moment and that is the most important thing. When you are in that frame of mind, you can just go out and enjoy your snooker. That is what I did in China. I didn’t quite manage to win the final, but I felt I dictated all of the games on my way there. I’m really looking forward to Lommel and I have to target that event now.”

“We last went over to Belgium for a PTC event in Antwerp. It was always really well attended and I think all of the players enjoyed it. I’m sure it will be the same case in Lommel. It seems like a really friendly town. I’m staying in Centre Parcs which will be a bit different. A nice touch instead of going to a normal hotel.”

Looking back at last week, there were some tremendous performances on your way to the final. One of the highlights was a 5-1 demolition of two-time World Champion Mark Williams. You went on a run of 503 unanswered points, just 44 short of Stuart Bingham’s record. Is that the best display of your career so far?

“Mark is obviously one of the all-time greats, so to completely dominate the match in the way I did was really pleasing. It wasn’t just about who it was against, the fact it was a big quarter-final on television made the win even more special. It can be easier to have a bit of a purple patch and hold your concentration in a shorter format. With it being a best of nine, I managed to keep things ticking over and played well. It isn’t so easy to sustain that form over a best of 19 match.”

Wilson couldn’t keep his strong form up against Ding in the final

The final was your third big match with Ding on Chinese soil. It didn’t go the way you would have hoped, but how different is the atmosphere playing him on his home turf?

“Well I beat him on the way to winning the Shanghai Masters in 2015 and got a win over him at last season’s China Open quarter-finals. It was great to have that on him, but I think he was out for revenge in the final this week, he played very well. It is always special playing Ding in China because the crowd comes out in their numbers. You are looking at huge amounts of people tuning in on TV and that really adds to the match.”

In your semi-final with Mark Allen you used the rest in a rather unorthodox way, propping the handle on the cushion and bridging with your hand on the middle of the rest (watch here). Where did you get that idea from?

“It is something my coach Barry Stark has shown me. He’s very wise and knows all of the tricks of the trade. It is just about getting that extra bit of elevation over the pack of reds. The shaft of the rest essentially just acts like a bridge in itself. The ball I was potting was close to the pocket which helped. It was the first time I ever did it on television in a tournament. I hadn’t had the opportunity to do it until then. I was actually dying to get the chance to play it.”

You celebrated the birth of your second son Bailey just before travelling to Yushan. How much of a motivation is it now to register more titles to leave something for your children to look at when they are older?

“It was obviously high up on the agenda to try and get the win in Yushan. It was very tough leaving my family, as Bailey was only born a couple of days before I had to go to China. I wanted to make travelling out there count and it to be worthwhile being away from him and my other son Finley. I’ll be working really hard to try and bring one home for them soon. I did receive a trophy for being runner-up in China and Finley was asking about it as soon as I came in the door. It wasn’t that long after he was born that I won in Shanghai, so I am hoping that Bailey is going to be a lucky omen now as well.”

Watch Kyren in action at next week’s European Masters in Lommel. The event runs from Monday 2nd October – Sunday 8th October. Click here to buy tickets now.