Sports / Snooker

Selby denies Ding's first world title attempt

( Updated: 2016-05-03 08:17
Selby denies Ding's first world title attempt

Mark Selby celebrates with the trophy and with a flag after Leicester City club won the premier league tonight after Tottenham Hotspur draw against Chelsea earlier tonight at the Betfred World Snooker ChampionshipBetfred World Snooker Championships 2016 Day Seventeen Crucible Theatre, 55 Norfolk Street, Sheffield, United Kingdom May 2, 2016. [Photo/IC]

Mark Selby denied Asia its first snooker world champion by beating China's Ding Junhui 18-14 in the World Championship final on Monday.

It was the second time in three years that the Englishman had won snooker's most important prize.

Selby was ahead throughout in the final at Sheffield's Crucible Theatre but Monday's concluding session saw Ding, who bases himself in the northern English city for much of the snooker season, close the gap to 16-14 before the 2014 champion prevailed.

"I had a very bad start 6-0 down, I couldn't win a frame. I was a bit nervous as I hadn't been in a (World Championship) final before," the 29-year-old Ding, who had to come through qualifying in order to reach the main draw of this year's edition after dropping out of snooker's top 16, told the BBC.

Tipped to be a world champion ever since winning the UK Championship, snooker's second-most important tournament as a teenager in 2005, Ding said he hoped Monday's display would act as a springboard to eventual world title success.

"Five years ago I was in the semi-final and this year was one step up, so maybe next year I'm going to win it," said Ding after a defeat that left Canada's Cliff Thorburn (1980), the Republic of Ireland's Ken Doherty (1997) and Australia's Neil Robertson (2010) as the only non-British winners of the World Championship since the modern era tournament started in 1969.

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