Judd Trump has reached the final of the 2022 Cazoo Champion of Champions beating Mark Selby 6-3 at the University of Bolton Stadium live on ITV4 in the UK and broadcasters worldwide.
In the first meeting between the pair in a ranking event since 2019, it promised to be an enthralling night in Bolton. Trump took the first frame with relative ease making 89 to leave Selby in his chair. Selby came back in the second though with the Jester 57 to the good. Trump came to the table but couldn’t make the most of it to allow Selby to claw it back at 1-1.
Trump’s safety was as good as its been for some time leaving Selby toiling in frame three to go 2-1 up before heading into the interval with a two frame cushion after a smart break of 74. A three-ball plant was the pick of the bunch from Trump in the fourth. Some real quality was shown from both at the restart as Selby found his groove to make 66 to trail by one.
The sixth frame was full of everything the fans in Bolton had come to expect of the contest with precision safety play from both on show with the yellow subject to plenty of table miles in the process. Selby did edge it though to level back at 3-3.
A beautiful splitting of the pack from Trump in the seventh opened up the table for the defending champion to get to work and lead again at 4-3 with a contribution of 83. Selby would rue the missed opportunity after Selby had seen the black ricochet out the pocket. The best was still to come from Trump who would be sending the crowd home happy with a break of 114 to green moving him one away from the final.
In what proved to be the final frame, Trump laid Selby in a brutal snooker that took five attempts for the four-time world champion to make contact on a red. Trump looked to have it set from there but left Selby with a chance on a long red. The red rattled out before kissing the black which rolled in the bottom left pocket to which Selby conceded and it was Trump progressing.
“It was a tricky game. It always is against Mark. At times, I managed to get a good lead at 3-1 but after the interval, I played a bad shot and I let him in straight away. He was able to dictate the game from then and then he fluked the ball at 3-2. Against the best, it’s always best to keep a two frame cushion, you feel a little more comfortable. It was important for me to get the balls open, the frames were starting to go slow. I felt I had to start to dictate play and break the balls up (the seventh frame),” said Trump.
I will look forward to another amazing final. This is a tournament I love playing in. I love coming here. The atmosphere is always brilliant. The crowd is brilliant. It’s nice to be involved in the final again.”
Tomorrow’s semi-final sees Ronnie O’Sullivan meet Fan Zhengyi for the chance to play in Trump in Sunday’s best of 19 final. Action tomorrow is live on ITV3 from 6:45 pm. Watch on DAZN in the USA, Canada, Brazil, Spain, and Italy as well as on Viaplay in Scandinavia and the Baltics and Matchroom.Live if you are in a country without a broadcaster. See the full list of where to watch here.
Please note – tomorrow’s coverage in the UK will be on ITV3.