SHEFFIELD, May 2 (Xinhua) -- Mark Selby defeated China’s DingJunhui 18-14 in the final of the snooker world championship here on Monday.
Ding, the first Asian player to reach the final, made a late surge from 16-11 down to 16-14, but Selby, the 2014 champion, won a tense 31st frame before sealing victory in the next.
Selby joins Steve Davis, Stephen Hendry, Mark Williams, John Higgins and Ronnie O’Sullivan as the only players to lift the trophy more than once at the Crucible.
The 32-year-old Selby collected a record cheque for 330,000 pounds .
"It’s a great feeling," said Selby. "To win it once was a huge achievement, and something that I wanted to do, but I never dreamed of winning twice, I’m quite emotional.
"Ding was under a lot of pressure, it was his first world final and there’s massive expectation from China. I knew I had to capitalise early doors, every time I got a chance I punished him and scored. I missed a blue to go 7-0 up and if I had done that I might have won more easily. ”
"For a lot of this tournament my game has been average, whereas Ding has played great, the only bad session he had was in the first session in the final. I was second favorite, but here I am sitting here as world champion. I think it was just grit and determination, I never give in, no matter how badly I’m playing. Until that final ball is potted I still keep believing inside that I can win."
Ding said: "I played well in the last session. The start was very bad, I went 6-0 down and I was too far away from Mark. He played good safety and he knows how to win frames. The match got harder but I enjoyed it more towards the end. "
"Five years ago I got to the semifinals and now this year I have gone one step further. Maybe next time I’m going to win this. It’s good experience for my career, I enjoyed the final and not many players have got to the final here.”
"This season I have been working with Terry Griffiths for the first time and I think I have improved. If I keep playing like this I can win more tournaments."