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Judd Trump savours “best ever win” after denying Mark Williams in last-frame epic to reach Crucible final

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Trump prevailed a 17-16 winner over Williams on Saturday (PA Images / Alamy Stock Photo)

Judd Trump admitted it was “probably my best ever win” as he beat Mark Williams 17-16 in a Crucible classic to reach the World Championship final.

The Ace withstood an almighty fightback from the three-time World champion to book his place in a third Crucible showpiece.

Indeed the 2019 winner, who led 12-5 following the opening frame of the third session on Friday, was pegged to 13-11 before trailing for the first time at 16-15.

Williams took his century tally for the tournament to 16 along the way – equalling Stephen Hendry’s record for the most tons compiled during a single World Championship – before taking the 31st frame on the pink.

However, Trump maintained his composure to force a decider, in which both players enjoyed a fluked red early on, before the Ace took control with a run of 49.

The world number four, who was beaten 17-16 by Stuart Bingham at this stage in 2015, became only the second player to be involved in two deciding frames in the Crucible semi-finals after Mark Selby (2007 and 2020).

As the pressure intensified, he doubled two of the last three reds as shots to nothing to move to the snookers required stage, eventually securing a remarkable victory.

Trump arrived at the Crucible off the back of a generally modest campaign by his standards, despite claiming the Champion of Champions and Turkish Masters titles.

But the Bristolian now faces either Ronnie O’Sullivan or John Higgins on Sunday and Monday for the right to become a multiple winner of snooker’s blue-riband event.

“There were so many emotions going through that game,” he told BBC Sport.

“I knew he was going to fight back at some point. I thought if I could just share the frames, but he played unbelievable.

“I think it made it easier for me to take. My long potting wasn’t there during that last session but other than that, I wasn’t doing that much wrong.

“I was actually enjoying watching him. He was absolutely incredible. I broke off and if he could see a red, it was frame over. Towards the end, I just had to laugh to myself because it was like playing a computer game.

“There were a lot of things that went against me, but I just tried to stay positive. I think that’s probably my best ever win.

“He made a couple of mistakes and in the end; I had all my luck in the last frame.

“It’s been a tough season but when you get wins like that, it’s monumental really.

“It’s so tough to lose a game like that, so to get over the line is something you’re probably going to remember forever.”

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