Australia’s Neil Robertson came from 5-1 down to beat the defending champion, Mark Selby, and win the UK Championship final 10-7 in York last night.
The 2010 world champion thus became the first player from outside Great Britain to win snooker’s 'triple crown’ of the World Championship, UK Championship and Masters tournaments.
He is also only the eighth player in history to win all three tournaments following Alex Higgins, Terry Griffiths, Steve Davis, Stephen Hendry, John Higgins, Mark Williams and Ronnie O’Sullivan.
“When I beat John Higgins earlier this year in the Wuxi Classic, I said that was the best I’d ever played in a final but the second session tonight was definitely the best I’ve played in a final,” Robertson said.
“To become the first overseas player to win all three – Ding Junhui and I basically turned pro at the same time 10 years ago and to get it ahead of him is a fantastic achievement. I’m sure he’ll get there some day as well, but to be the first is a fantastic feeling.”
Selby raced into a 5-1 lead before Robertson won the final two frames of the first session to trail 5-3. And the Australian continued his recovery in the second and concluding session of the best of 19-frame final last night to square the match.
Selby, who on Saturday made professional tournament snooker’s 100th maximum break of 147 during his semi-final victory over Ricky Walden, carried on from where he left off with a first-frame break of 130.
After Selby’s superb start, Robertson, the world No1, levelled at 1-1 with a break of 63 before contributions of 49, 39 and 35 saw last year’s champion go out in front. But Robertson hit back with a break of 54 before an excellently compiled 123 in the final frame of the session reduced Selby’s lead to a mere two frames.
Selby took the first frame of the evening session but breaks of 32 and 56 kept Robertson in touch. In the 11th frame Robertson made a fine break of 122 and he then topped that with a break of 132.
The Australian won the next two frames as well and took the 16th on the black after Selby 'jawed’ a pot along the cushion to move within a frame of victory, which he completed with a break of 57.