Here we delve back into the 17 days of this year’s World Championship and remind ourselves of the great moments and the major talking points.
MURPHY ‘TRICK SHOT’ WOWS FANS
Looking at it now, it was a match Shaun Murphy will want to forget as he got brushed aside by an in-form Ronnie O’Sullivan in the second round encounter.
But despite losing 13-6, there was a positive moment for Murphy as he wowed the crowd with a stunning pot in the middle pocket while snookered behind the yellow.
Knowing full well he would likely leave it on for O’Sullivan, Murphy produced a brilliant two-cushion shot which featured plenty of side spin so the cueball could knock the red in rather than take a natural direction to the other side of the table.
It’s a shot which will be remembered for years to come. Some hailed it the best shot ever. And it even got experts talking….
THE DING/RONNIE EMBRACE
After years of trying Ding Junhui finally beat managed to beat Ronnie O’Sullivan in one of his best displays at the famous Crucible Theatre.
However it wasn’t just the win that wowed fans but it was the touching embrace between the pair after Ding clinched victory in the quarter-final.
When shaking hands O’Sullivan put his arm around Ding and said a few words to congratulate him. It was clear Ding, who had lost to his hero O’Sullivan eight times out of nine in major competitions, got emotional after the conversation.
It was a fantastic moment of true sportsmanship at its finest.
McLEOD BEATS TRUMP IN MAJOR CRUCIBLE SHOCK
Before a cueball was struck at this year’s World Championship, many fancied this was going to be Judd Trump’s year.
And the bookies rated him highly, placing him as joint-favourite with world number one Mark Selby. But the then world number 54 Rory McLeod had other ideas.
Despite trailing 4-0 at one stage, McLeod produced a stunning comeback to then lead 5-4 before going on to win the first round match 10-8.
Many called it one of the greatest Crucible shocks of all time. McLeod ended up losing heavily to Stephen Maguire in the second round.
Trump has since kept quiet only tweeting once since the defeat.
ROBERTSON’S ‘COME ON’ SHOUT IN EPIC BATTLE
We all know Neil Robertson likes to show his emotions now and again on the table.
The 2010 world champion did it three years ago when he roared with delight after he hit his 100th century of the season against Judd Trump in a Crucible quarter-final.
And the Australian showed just how he felt again after winning the 21st frame of his epic second round match against Marco Fu. A deciding black ball frame went Robertson’s way and to show his delight he yelled out ‘come on’.
However despite his shout, Fu went on to win the next frames and beat the Australian 13-11.
CRUCIBLE GETS NEW TEN-YEAR DEAL
Probably one of the most important moments came before a cueball was struck this year in Sheffield.
On the eve of this year’s World Championship and during a celebratory show to mark the 40th anniversary of the Crucible hosting the World Championship – a major announcement was made.
The show, which was broadcast live on BBC Red Button and Eurosport UK, saw Barry Hearn and Councillor Julia Dore – Leader of Sheffield City Council – formally sign the dotted line to state the World Championship will be held at the Crucible for at least a further ten years.
THE NEW GENERATION – 17-YEAR-OLD YAN BINGTAO IMPRESSES
Though he lost in the first round, this year’s World Championship will be one that one teenager will remember for the rest of his life.
Making his debut at the famous venue, 17-year-old Yan Bingtao certainly earned rave reviews after pushing Shaun Murphy all the way in the opening round.
The 2005 world champion manged to fight off Bingtao, winning by a slender margin of 10-8 but afterwards was full of praise for his Chinese opponent.
Murphy said Bingtao in years to come could do ‘serious damage’ in the sport.
AND SELBY DOES IT AGAIN
Well, what more can you say about the now three-time world champion Mark Selby.
The Jester from Leicester successfully defended his Crucible title joining the likes of Steve Davis, Stephen Hendry and Ronnie O’Sullivan to do so. He has now strengthened his position as the dominant force in today’s game.
Whether your favourite moment is his epic semi-final win over Ding Junhui or his comeback from 10-4 down to beat John Higgins in the final – Selby has once again earned the plaudits across the globe.
Selby has won a staggering £1 million pound in prize money over a two year period – sitting head and shoulders above the rest of the pack.
He is already the odds on favourite to win the title all again next year.