The Betfair Masters champion 2013 is Mark Selby after the world no.1 beat defending champion Neil Robertson 10-6 in last nights final.
There is a lot of talk these days about whether it's possible with all the tournaments we now have,for the sport to ever have a player dominate in the way Davis and Hendry have in the past.This is probably unlikely but maybe the goalposts of what dominance means has moved.If a player can win the games "Majors" surely he can be thought of as the sports dominant force?
That is where Selby finds himself now after adding this Masters title to the UK title he lifted in December and will now be looking forward to the World Championship and the chance to join a very exclusive club who have held all three titles at the same time.His style of play may not be to everyones taste but one thing that can't be questioned is his will to win as well as his ability to produce when it matters most. Aren't they after all the qualities we are supposed to admire most in our champions?
The match itself wasn't a classic but not every final can be.Coming in the consensus among people seemed to be that Robertson had played the best snooker of anyone during the week and this together with the late night finish of the Selby-Dott match on Saturday put him as a strong favourite.That is not the way it was to pan out though as maybe the added pressure that came with Robertson attempting to become the fist player since the late Paul Hunter to defend the title began to weigh heavily on the Aussie.Whatever the reason he looked edgy in the early part and never fully recovered.
Selby on the other hand looked a different player to the man who had struggled in the early round and just as he had done in the UK championship he reserved his best form for the final.he stormed out the blocks into a 3-0 lead and would have been a little disappointed that he only lead 5-3 after Robertson battled to win last two frames of afternoon session.
Robertson needed to have a good start to the night session but it once again Selby who started he better opening up an 8-3 lead to be move within two of the title.Robertson to his credit rallied to close to 8-6 but when Selby made it 9-6 the writing was on the wall and he won the next to seal the win and collect his third Masters title.
So what else have we learned this week?
1. We once again saw last night the folly of starting the evening session of the final at 8pm.Even taking into account the fact we still had a potential for three more frames and none of those we had were overly long,it was still approaching midnight when the action finished.This is unacceptable on a Sunday night both for those in attendance and the people watching at home who have to work on a Monday morning.Hopefully part of the new BBC deal will be a return to a more sensible start time though I have my doubts.
2. These are worrying times for fans of Judd Trump.Only a few month's ago he seemed set to be the star of the season.playing superbly well to win the international Championship and becoming world no.1.This new status in the game was only to last to until the UK Championship where he lost tamely to Joyce in the first round and although he rallied to beat Hawkins in rd 1 here he was awful against \Dott in the Quarter finals.To my eyes he seemed to have no sharpness in his play and looked to have maybe not have spent the hours on the practice table he should have.He will need to reapply himself for next few month's or this season is in danger of fizzling out.
3.If he continues to play as he did last week then Mark Allen is a certainty to be in the winners circle before the end of the season.Last week he was excellent against Mark Davis and but for a shot in a hundred from Neil Robertson in the decider he could well have won this tournament.You have to believe that if he keeps up this form he will win a trophy sooner rather then later.
4.In Hendry we have a pundit who isn't afraid to speak his mind and he has been a refreshing presence in the studio as well as the commentary box.The thing that does annoy me with the BBC tournaments are the commentary earpieces in the audience.Having attended many snooker match's over the years I never have felt the need to have one and as far as I can see all they do is distract the players while on a shot.I know they make money for the association selling them but surely not that much.
5/Finally there is still a lot of talking to be done before this flat 128 draw comes in next season.We are yet to hear how it will work out logistically and until then it is impossible form a proper opinion.Listening to the various points raised during this week though there could be trouble on the horizon.
These are just my opinions on what overall a thoroughly enjoyable week.Feel free to comment or add your own.