sport

Trump battles past Hawkins

World number two Judd Trump survived a huge scare to seal his spot in the quarter-finals of the Betfair Masters on Tuesday afternoon.

Trump had a nail-biting 6-5 victory over Barry Hawkins, claiming the win with a superb century.

Trump, last year's semi-finalist and widely fancied to go all the way at Alexandra Palace this time, looked destined for an early exit after Hawkins rattled off three successive frames from 3-2 down to leave himself within sight of the win.

However, Trump battled back with a 105 break before edging a tension-filled 10th frame - where Hawkins missed a couple of a straightforward-looking pots with victory within his grasp - to send the match to a decider.

No doubt relieved to still be in contention, the Bristolian made no mistake in the final frame as he rattled off a break of 107 to claim the win and set up a quarter-final meeting with Graeme Dott.

Trump feared his tournament was all over before Hawkins let him back in with the missed shots in the 10th frame.

Asked if he felt he was heading out, Trump told BBC2: "Yeah, I didn't really see the angle he had on the first black when he was playing for the yellow, but it looked pretty easy from where I was and the second one I never thought he was going to miss.

"All his 50-50 shots today he seemed to knock in, he scored pretty heavy."

On how he managed to turn things around, the 23-year-old added: "I don't know, not a clue. I didn't do that much wrong, my safety wasn't good, I kept breaking down and those little nudges weren't happening today.

"Whoever you play here is going to be a tough game, Barry played really well so hopefully that stands me in good stead for the rest of the tournament."

Defeated Hawkins was devastated to see victory slip through his fingers.

"That was my match there, I've just thrown that one away, but never mind," he said.

"I got myself back in the frame at 5-4 but he didn't give me a chance in the next frame.

"I'm devastated, I had the match in my hands and I just handed it to him."

The thrilling action on the table was not the only thing that caught the attention today, with Trump's extravagant footwear also turning heads.

However, Trump was forced to change out of the 'Rollerboy Spikes' by French designer Christian Louboutin during the match as he kept slipping in them.

Not that it has put him off wearing them again in future matches.

He said: "I thought it was time for a change. I've had my other ones for a long time. I went out for the first two frames and tried them on and I was sliding around out there and had to take them off.

"I was all right in the practice room but as soon as I went out there I just started sliding around.

"Hopefully I'll wear them in the next game but I was sliding around out there so we're going to have to make a few adjustments so I can wear them.

"It's just a little bit different, I like to stand out now and again."

Having reached the semi-finals last year, Trump is widely fancied to go all the way at the Masters.

However, he was keen to play down the tag of favourite and insists he is still learning his trade.

"I still don't see myself as the favourite. Every tournament I play in I see John Higgins as the favourite. I think John Higgins is proven and I've still only won three tournaments," he said.

"I think people get a little bit carried away and then other people kind of knock down what I've done, I'm still young and won three tournaments already.

"I go into every tournament full of confidence but I've still got a lot to learn and I'm still learning today."

While Trump looks forward to his last-eight showdown with Dott, Hawkins was left to pick up the pieces after seeing victory slip through his fingers.

"I'm devastated, I had the match in my hands and I just handed it to him," Hawkins said.

"At the moment I feel like I can't take any positives. My head's spinning. I'm a bit gutted at the moment.

"I let him off the hook. He played well in the end and when you don't take your chances you get punished and that's what happened to me."

Last year's runner-up Shaun Murphy was also made to fight before sealing his place in the quarter-finals with a 6-4 victory over Ricky Walden.

Fourth seed Murphy looked to be cruising through as he established a 4-1 lead with the aid of a break of 79 in the first frame and a brilliant 130 in the fifth.

However, Murphy failed to make the most of breaks in the 40s in the next two frames as Walden fought back to 4-3.

Walden then levelled it up at 4-4 with a break of 65 but he could not continue his charge as Murphy regrouped to take the final two frames and set up a last-eight meeting with John Higgins.