Trump claims historic sixth ranking title and huge £200,000 prize
Judd Trump proved his class as the world's outstanding player by becoming the first man in snooker history to win six ranking events in a single season with a stunning triumph at the Gibraltar Open.
- Watch LIVE snooker on Eurosport and the Eurosport Player
- Why O’Sullivan remains a serious contender to win sixth world title
- Snooker continues in face of coronavirus chaos in world sport
Trump is facing up to the prospect that the Gibraltar tournament could be the last event of the season due to the rapidly escalating coronavirus pandemic.
But at least he can head into probable hibernation knowing he has surpassed green baize icons Stephen Hendry, Ronnie O’Sullivan, Ding Junhui and Mark Selby, who had all lifted five ranking events in a season.
Trump showed his class as a 4-3 win over fellow Englishman Kyren Wilson in an engrossing final at the Europa Point Sports Complex saw him earn £50,000 and a £150,000 bonus as the winner of the Betvictor European Series.
With world number two Neil Robertson ruling himself out of the event due to illness, Trump took full advantage to add the Gibraltar Open to his other five victories at the International Championship, World Open, Northern Ireland Open, German Masters and Players Championship.
Robertson had led Trump by £35,000, but breaks of 125, 144, 123, and 63 saw him edge Wilson, who himself excelled with breaks of 115 and 56 in a final that deserved to be watched by thousands rather than be restricted to closed doors.
The elite eight-man Tour Championship – where Trump starts as favourite at the top of the one-year ranking list - is due to begin in Llandudno on Tuesday with the World Championship at the Crucible Theatre pencilled in for April 18-May 4.
But with Premier League and Scottish Premiership football cancelled and Six Nations rugby postponed this weekend, the health crisis could deny Trump the chance to defend his title next month.
“It’s always a nice place to come,” said Trump, who overcame Li Hang and Liang Wenbo 4-1 before he survived a tight encounter against Xiao Guodong 4-3 in the last four. “It’s obviously difficult circumstances at the moment.
"Everyone is in the same position, and everybody is trying to grab a win before who knows what will happen."
The China Open in Beijing was due to be played later this month, but has already been cancelled due to the outbreak.
The Gibraltar Open was initially due to be played in front of 100 fans, but became a closed doors event on Saturday with neighbours Spain heading for lockdown after declaring a state of national emergency with the death toll at 191 and thousands battling the illness.
Trump has moved onto 97 centuries for the season, also compiling 103 in his win over Li, 113 against Liang, and 111 and 123 against Xiao, but admits beating Neil Robertson’s record tally of 103 centuries from 2013/14 could be beyond him.
"It’s going to be difficult. I obviously don’t how many matches I’ve got left or tournaments I’ve got left. It might be out of my hands already."
Robertson and several leading players including Ali Carter, David Gilbert, Stephen Maguire, Graeme Dott and Jimmy White body swerved the event amid the outbreak.
The Gibraltar Open has already courted attention for its decision to defy the coronavirus outbreak that has wiped out most of the sporting calendar.
Seven referees were unable to get to the tournament after their flights were cancelled, leading to bizarre scenes on some tables as players re-spotted the balls in their own matches.
Gibraltar Open final (best of seven frames)
- Judd Trump 4-3 Kyren Wilson
Gibraltar Open semi-finals (best of seven frames)
- Judd Trump 4-3 Xiao Gudong
- Kyren Wilson 4-0 Mark Williams
Gibraltar Open quarter-finals
- Thepchaiya Un-Nooh 0-4 Kyren Wilson
- David Grace 1-4 Mark Williams
- Jimmy Robertson 3-4 Xiao Guodong
- Liang Wenbo 1-4 Judd Trump
Gibraltar Open last 16 results
- Ben Woollaston 2-4 Thepchaiya Un-Nooh
- Fergal O'Brien 3-4 Kyren Wilson
- Lyu Haotian 1-4 David Grace
- Tian Pengfei 3-4 Mark Williams
- Rory McLeod 1-4 Jimmy Robertson
- Tom Ford 2-4 Xiao Guodong
- Ashley Hugill 2-4 Liang Wenbo
- Li Hang 1-4 Judd Trump
Gibraltar Open last 32
- Stuart Bingham 0-4 Ben Woollaston
- Thepchaiya Un-Nooh 4-0 Harvey Chandler
- Fergal O'Brien 4-2 Chen Zifan
- Luca Brecel 0-4 Kyren Wilson
- Mark Selby 1-4 Lyu Haotian
- Oliver Lines 1-4 David Grace
- Scott Donaldson 2-4 Tian Pengfei
- Martin Gould 1-4 Mark Williams
- Rory McLeod 4-1 Elliot Slessor
- Joe Perry 3-4 Jimmy Robertson
- Tom Ford 4-2 Jack Lisowski
- Xiao Guodong 4-1 Lun Ning
- Michael Holt 1-4 Ashley Hugill
- Liang Wenbo 4-1 Zhao Xintong
- Mark Joyce 3-4 Li Hang
- Martin O'Donnell 1-4 Judd Trump