Judd Trump admits he was no fan of Mark Williams growing up

April 28, 2022
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Phil Haigh ✍️  

Judd Trump Mark Williams
Judd Trump and Mark Williams meet for the first time in the World Snooker Championship (Pictures: Getty)

Judd Trump is happy to admit that Mark Williams was not a player he looked up to as a youngster, but is now full of respect for the Welshman ahead of their World Snooker Championship semi-final.

Trump and Williams meet for a place in the Crucible final, with Ronnie O’Sullivan and John Higgins completing the blockbuster line-up in the last four.

The three veterans make up the famed Class of 92 with Trump the junior member of the semi-final contingent, 15 years younger than his next opponent.

Asked whether he was a fan of Williams as a kid, the Ace did not mind admitting that he was not, with the Rocket much more his snooker hero growing up.

In fact, the suggestion reminded him of an entertaining moment earlier in the tournament when Yan Bingtao was asked if he looked up to Mark Selby and said no.

‘No,’ Trump laughed when asked if he grew up a fan of Williams. ‘That question kind of reminded me of the Yan Bingtao, Mark Selby one the other day.

‘He wasn’t someone I really looked up to when I was a kid, I think Ronnie has taken that limelight. Even John Higgins isn’t someone I looked up to as much as Ronnie.’

The respect for Williams is unquestioned now, though, and Trump believes the Class of 92 have plenty of time at the top of the sport to come.

‘I think you just appreciate what they’ve done when you get to my age and they’re still there giving it their absolute all, able to compete,’ he said. ‘To be honest they could compete for another 10 years, every year that goes by I think they could be playing until their late 50s, even 60s.

‘I think Ronnie’s someone that you could see one day just driving round when he’s 65-70 in one of those little buggy things older people have. Playing each shot, getting back in it and driving to the next shot. I think he’s that good.

‘So it’ll be interesting to see which one wants to play for the longest because I think they’ve got 10 or 15 years left.’

He added on Williams: ‘I know that I need to play somewhere near my absolute best to compete with him.

‘He’s certainly up there with one of the greats and the way he’s playing right now, he’s got another five or 10 years in him. He’s got a great attitude towards snooker, he’s just enjoying it.’

After the semi-final line-up was completed on Wednesday night with Higgins beating Jack Lisowski, Trump joked: ‘I’ve ended up stuck in the middle of a World Seniors Championship.’

He added: ‘Super excited for the semi finals tho still battling it out with 3 legends of the game!’

Trump and Williams get their four-session semi-final underway on Thursday afternoon at the Crucible, with Higgins and O’Sullivan starting in the evening session.

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