Snooker: Trump says title is his aim despite Robertson claim

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The Independent Online

Judd Trump, snooker's rising star, is desperate to be considered a genuine contender for this year's World Championships at the Crucible.

And on the evidence of his fine 10-8 first-round victory against defending champion Neil Robertson on the opening weekend of snooker's biggest tournament, you'd be hard pushed to argue with the ambitious Bristol player.

Trump, 21, showed plenty of bottle as he battled his way into the last-16 stage of the 17-day green baize marathon. And the world No 14 took exception after his win when Robertson said his young conqueror wasn't "mature enough" to land the £250,000 first prize.

"I'm not sure why he [Neil] said that. Why be in the tournament if you didn't think you could win it?" snapped Trump. "Who wants to make the semis? I wouldn't enter the tournament if I didn't think I couldn't win it.

"I've come into this tournament with high expectations. There's no reason why I can't go all the way."

Confidence indeed, but having won the China Open – his first ranking title last month – no wonder Trump is on the crest of a confidence wave.

Next up for Trump, already being dubbed the next Ronnie O'Sullivan, is a second round match with Hong Kong's Marco Fu, a 2006 Crucible semi-finalist, or Pinner-based professional Martin Gould, on Thursday evening.

Shaun Murphy, the 2005 world champion, came within a whisker of inflicting the first Crucible whitewash for 19 years as he thumped qualifier Marcus Campbell 10-1.

The Manchester cueman led Campbell 9-0 in their first-round match, but his opponent pinched what proved to be the penultimate frame to prevent himself from being written in the history books for all the wrong reasons.

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