Kurt Maflin makes big Judd Trump prediction as he inflicts shock loss on the Ace

February 24, 2022
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Phil Haigh ✍️

Betfred World Snooker Championship - Day Nine
Judd Trump continues to struggle for the results he has produced in the past (Picture: Getty Images)

Kurt Maflin stunned Judd Trump in the last 32 of the European Masters on Wednesday night, but feels the Ace’s struggles for results will come to an end, probably at the World Championship.

Trump has won a big tournament this season, lifting the Champion of Champions trophy in November, but after winning 11 ranking titles over the previous two seasons, it is a downturn in results for the 32-year-old.

Ranking tournaments have been the issue for the Ace this season, with his fall in the second round of the European Masters meaning that he has been to just three quarter-finals this campaign and not beyond.

Maflin extended that run with a 5-3 win on Wednesday, but does not see Trump’s results as concerning, believing that his incredible bout of success was impossible to maintain.

Such is the talent of the former world champion that he will be picking up trophies again, possibly at the Crucible in May.

‘Overall it was a solid performance. I missed a couple, Judd missed a couple,’ Maflin told WST after the big win in Milton Keynes. ‘I potted some crucial long balls. I just wanted a chance at 4-3 to finish it off.

Evergrande 2019 World Snooker China Championship - Day 5
Kurt Maflin was superb against Trump after a really quiet season (Picture: Getty Images)

‘Judd couldn’t keep going at the rate he was a couple of years ago, he is only human, it was unbelievable what he was playing over those 18 months, it’s got to taper off a little bit.

‘But, for sure he will come back just as strong, when that will happen, who knows? Probably at the World Championship.’

A player’s struggles are all relative and Maflin would be absolutely thrilled to be enjoying the season Trump has had, with the 38-year-old enduring a seriously quiet campaign.

This is the first time the world number 33 has been to the last 16 of an event this season, and clearly not at his best, he admits he has been struggling against the immense standard of the World Snooker Tour.

On the next table to Maflin on Wednesday night was Fan Zhengyi shocking Kyren Wilson 5-4 and missing the final brown for a 147, once again demonstrating the strength in depth on tour.

‘It’s hard, all these players now are all good, tough opponents,’ said Maflin. ‘The kid that was playing beside me, Fan, just missed the brown for a max.

‘I’m not sure where he’s ranked but it’s probably not very high [#80]. The standard is just really tough, you need to play well all the time.’

Maflin is back in action against Anthony McGill in the last 16 on Thursday evening at 7pm.

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