NEIL Robertson clinched his place in the World Championship semi-finals as well as snooker’s history books after producing a memorable comeback to defeat Judd Trump.
Robertson looked down and out when Trump led 11-8 halfway through the evening session but the Australian had other ideas as he won five frames on the bounce to defeat the Bristol star 13-11 and set up a semi-final match against Mark Selby.
And on a memorable night for the 2010 world champion, he became the first ever player to hit 100 centuries in a single season as a break of 101 in frame 22 saw him level the contest before he went on to win the next two frames.
It is a fantastic achievement from Robertson who showed his delight in front of an enthralled Crucible crowd yelling out cheers and fist pumping his way out of the arena.
Deep in trouble, Robertson certainly showed the battling qualities needed to win the World Championship for a second time and his display echoed Ronnie O’Sullivan’s second round win over Joe Perry in that he produced his best form when his back was against the wall.
The night proved another agonising one for Trump who will have to wait at least another year to be crowned the world champion for the first time. Tonight’s defeat reminiscent of his 2012 last 16 loss to Ali carter when he fought back from 12-8 down to clinch victory.
But Trump looked to have had the stranglehold over the Australian when he recovered from a bad start to the evening session to take an 11-8 lead going into the mid-session interval.
But after the break saw Robertson win a scrappy 20th frame before a break of 70 put him right back into the match going just one frame behind at 11-10.
Then the snooker gods fell on Robertson’s side as a superb break of saw him clinch the frame to go 11-11 but a pot on the final green saw the Australian make his 100th century of season which brought the crowd to its feet.
With momentum on his side breaks of 33 and 31 helped move him into the lead and when Trump missed a vital black in the next it allowed Robertson to get the points need to clinch an impressive win in testing circumstances.
Another test is to come for Robertson in Mark Selby which should make for compelling viewing.
World Championship 2014 – Semi-Final Draw
Ronnie O’SULLIVAN vs Barry HAWKINS
Mark SELBY vs Neil ROBERTSON