Judd Trump is reaping the benefits of hard work, and will be tough to shift for the rest of the Masters field - according to Neal Foulds and Jimmy White.
Trump backed up his 6-5 win over Mark Allen in the first round, in which he played superbly, with a 6-1 victory over Kyren Wilson in the quarter-finals.
The level of performance against Wilson was not as good as what he produced against Allen, but he played excellent match-snooker and gained his reward.
Jimmy White vs Judd Trump's Eurosport Masters shot of the championship pot
- I was in the toilet and I heard them - Williams on Alexandra Palace atmosphere
- I am not big headed - Ronnie O'Sullivan
“It is not all about centuries, it is about hard, match-play snooker,” White said on Eurosport. “Trump looked very focused in that match.
“He’s the type of player who if he got to the final, he could turn it on and play unplayable snooker. He has that in his locker.”
Wilson was in awe of a shot Trump played when leading 2-1, and it also impressed White.
“That red he played where he knocked it off the side cushion, it is such a difficult shot to play,” White said. “But make no mistake, Judd Trump with his brother will put up 200 long reds in a practice session and all of a sudden these shots become easy to play when they are so difficult. For an average player, a shot like that is maybe one in ten. For these guys, it is eight or nine out of ten as they put in the work, and once it is in the tank it comes out in a match situation.”
Foulds was impressed with how Trump went about his win over Wilson, and feels he is the man to beat at Alexandra Palace.
“His highest break was 76, but he made a lot of telling breaks,” Foulds said. “He can be vulnerable early on, he showed that against Mark Allen where he could easily have lost, but if he can get through those early rounds, he is usually a dangerous prospect.
“Once he is there and entrenched in the tournament, he is the man to beat.
“He is a winner and a class player, and now he is still in and here for the weekend, he is going to take a lot of shifting now.”
- - -
Stream the Masters and other top snooker live and on-demand on discovery+. You can also watch all the action live on eurosport.co.uk.
'No regrets' - Trump not disappointed with Masters loss to Hawkins
Hawkins topples Trump in deciding frame to set up Masters final clash with Robertson