Barry Hawkins topples Judd Trump at the Tour Championship
Barry Hawkins pulled off a 10-7 victory over world number one Judd Trump to reach the Semi-Finals of the 2021 Tour Championship at Celtic Manor.
Eighth seed Hawkins took advantage of a below-par Trump as he subjected the 22-time ranking event winner to only his second First Round exit of the season.
Hawkins had established a 5-3 advantage following the first session and extended that lead to 7-3 before Trump hit back with three consecutive frames.
Hawkins, though, held firm to close out an impressive debut victory in the season’s final Cazoo Series event and set up a show-down with Ronnie O’Sullivan on Saturday.
“I’m just delighted to get a win over Judd,” Hawkins told ITV Sport. “He’s been playing some unbelievable stuff and it’s a big win for me.
“If it goes 9-8 them I’m starting to feel it but I felt pretty calm towards the end.
“Playing Ronnie [O’Sullivan] and Judd, you can only learn from those guys.
“I just play my game and settle into the match, you don’t need to panic in a long format if you go two or three frames behind. I’m a solid all-round player and the format suits my game.
“I’m over the moon to get through and it’s another match to look forward to against Ronnie.”
Hawkins made a dream start with breaks of 70 and 90 to clinch the opening two frames before Trump dominated the third frame and followed in with a break of 119 to draw level.
Hawkins took the next two frames and stretched his lead to 5-2 courtesy of a break of 63 before Trump stopped the rot with a break of 98 prior to the interval.
The former world finalist began the evening session magnificently with a break of 121 and clinched the tenth frame to nil to make it 7-3.
Trump stopped the rot in frame 11 before adding consecutive breaks of 64 and 86 to close the gap to just one at 7-6.
Hawkins got back on track by sealing the 14th frame by 78 points to nil and produced a break of 61 to go to the verge of victory at 9-6.
Trump responded strongly with a fine break of 94, but Hawkins prevailed in a marathon 17th frame to get over the line.
Trump conceded: “From the get-go he missed quite a lot of long balls and got away with them and that’s just how it goes sometimes.
“Another day, with the amount of balls he missed, if he’d have left me chances it could have easily been the other way around.
“I’m not too disappointed, the game goes like that sometimes, I’ve played a lot worse this season and won tournaments.”