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The Masters 2016: Sweet revenge for Judd Trump as Barry Hawkins sets up Allen clash

By Steve Simpson

Published 12/01/2016

Right on cue: Judd Trump
Right on cue: Judd Trump

Judd Trump reached the quarter-finals of The Masters for the first time in three years as he beat Stephen Maguire 6-4 in round one.

Looking to gain revenge for Maguire's victory over him at the same stage of the 2015 tournament, Trump battled back from losing the opening frame to establish a 4-1 lead.

Scotland's Maguire rallied well to bring things level at 4-4, but Englishman Trump subsequently claimed the next two frames to seal the triumph.

The last-eight will see Trump face the winner of tomorrow's match between Neil Robertson and Marco Fu.

"I just tried to stay calm," Trump said. "I was very nervous at 4-4 because I've not had a good last few tournaments and my confidence was very low.

"For me, it's an amazing win. My game is attacking, but everything in my head was negative.

"My lack of form has put pressure on because I was used to going out there and expecting to play well.

"I've played every day over Christmas - that's the first time I've ever done that. I think that's what got me through in the end.

"I've always enjoyed myself off the table, but now I'm at an age where I don't enjoy going out as much.

"Now I can give snooker four or five years of complete dedication and see what happens."

Last night, Barry Hawkins saw off Joe Perry 6-3 to set up a quarter-final clash with Mark Allen.

Ulsterman Allen advanced from the first round after a 6-4 triumph over Shaun Murphy on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Ronnie O'Sullivan is "nowhere near as good as he used to be" but still remains the best in the world, says Mark Williams.

Wales' Williams, 40, faces five-time champion O'Sullivan in The Masters first round at Alexandra Palace today.

Englishman O'Sullivan, 40, returned to the professional tour in December 2015 after an eight-month sabbatical.

Five-time World champion O'Sullivan did not defend his UK Championship title in October but made his comeback at the German Masters qualifiers in December.

He beat Pakistan's Hamza Akbar 5-1, but lost 5-3 in the second qualifying round to World No.62 62 Stuart Carrington.

It was his first tournament since losing to eventual winner Stuart Bingham in the World Championship quarter-finals in April.

Williams, Masters champion in 2000 and 2003, returns to the invitational tournament three years after his last appearance.

"It's just a freak how good he is," Williams added.

"There's not a player around that can play like him. He's nearly 41 and he's a country mile in front of any other player."

Belfast Telegraph

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