Tuesday January 22, 2013
Selby masters Australia’s Robertson
LONDON: Mark Selby won a third London Masters title as he beat defending champion Neil Robertson of Australia 10-6 in the final at London’s Alexandra Palace on Sunday.
As a result world number one Selby, who last month won the UK Championship, put himself on course to take the sport’s three major tournaments in the one season with the World Championship still to come.
“Every time we come out we play the one table session, every match feels like a final and we always get great crowds here in London,” said Selby, from Leicester.
Robertson said of Selby: “He’s a world-class player, world number one and very tough to beat. He’s a very deserving winner.”
In what was his fourth Masters final in six years, Selby raced into a 5-1 and then 8-3 lead, showing no ill effects after being on the table beyond midnight Saturday in seeing off Scotland’s Graeme Dott 6-5 in a lengthy semi-final.
However, Robertson rallied to reduce Selby’s lead to just two frames at 8-6, a sequence that saw the left-hander produce a well-constructed break of 83.
But Selby, the Masters champion in 2008 and 2010, was still in sight of the £175,000 (US$277,000) winner’s cheque.
The 15th frame then witnessed several drawn out safety exchanges before Robertson failed to make the blue safe.
Selby then produced a frame-clinching pot to stop Robertson’s run and move to within a frame of victory at 9-6.
In the next Selby had the first chance and made a useful contribution but jawed a black only for Robertson to snooker himself on a subsequent black.
As the pressure mounted, both men missed pots before Selby produced an excellent shot off the cushion to sink a long-range red that put him 50 points in front and he then wrapped up the title shortly before midnight.
Victory saw Selby join Thorburn, Hendry, Hunter, Steve Davis and Ronnie O’Sullivan in winning at least three Masters titles. — AFP