MARTIN GOULD lifted his first major ranking title since turning professional more than a decade ago after beating Luca Brecel in the German Masters final.
The Englishman put on a dominant performance throughout the best-of-17 final at Berlin’s Tempodrom Arena to claim his biggest triumph yet in the game.
Gould, 34, beat Belgian’s talented Brecel 9-5 to claim the trophy after suffering heartbreak twice before in major finals including the PTC Players Championship in 2011 and this season’s Australian Goldfields Open, which he lost to John Higgins in a final frame decider.
But there was no stopping the Londoner this time around after he impressively defeated the likes of Judd Trump and Graeme Dott to reach the final of the popular ranking event.
However Gould, who is now into the world’s top 16, had to work hard for it early on after Brecel took the lead with a break of 68.
Gould took the next two frames before a break of 72 extended his lead to 3-1 at the mid-session interval.
Brecel fought back after the restart but Gould made sure he went 5-3 ahead at the halfway stage with a break of 104.
Gould started the evening session as he finished the afternoon’s play with a superb break of 110. And Gould stretched his lead further to 7-3 in the next frame winning it by 58 points.
Brecel, playing in his first major final, reduced his deficit to 7-4 in the next frame with a break of 55 but Gould closed in on victory after taking the next frame.
After the mid-session interval, the 20-year-old Belgian kept his slim hopes alive with a brilliant pot on the final pink to win the 13th frame which was followed by a break of 63.
But Gould clinched his biggest achievement in snooker wrapping up victory in the next frame.
A thrilled Gould, who is now ranked 15 in the world, said: “It’s fantastic. I have worked so hard for this.”