Troubled Travels Can’t Stop Trump

Despite his suitcase failing to arrive in Fürth, Judd Trump donned a fellow competitor’s waistcoat and successfully saw off Noppon Saengkham 5-2 on day one of the BetVictor European Masters.

Trump’s suitcase didn’t appear at the airport after landing in Germany yesterday and he was forced into some emergency shopping this morning. After acquiring trousers, shoes and a shirt, the Bristolian borrowed Xiao Guodong’s waistcoat for today’s tie.

Trump claimed wins at the Champion of Champions and the Turkish Masters last season and ended on a positive note with a fine run to the World Championship final. He came just short of a second Crucible crown, after succumbing to an 18-13 loss against Ronnie O’Sullivan.

The Ace in the Pack took the opener this afternoon, before a century run of 103 helped Saengkham to immediately restore parity at 1-1. A break of 72 then saw Trump regain his lead and he claimed the fifth on the black to head into the mid-session 3-1 ahead.

When play resumed 2019 World Champion Trump added to his advantage, but Saengkham stayed in touch at 4-2 thanks to a break of 96. However, Trump then got over the line to book a last 64 tie against Ashley Hugill.

Trump said: “We managed to scramble some stuff together, a bit of this and that. I was walking about the shops for about three hours this morning trying to find some clothes. In the end I managed to do a good job. It is quite difficult playing in clothes you aren’t comfortable in, but I managed to get through that game.

“It is a lonely feeling seeing everyone with their suitcase walking to the bus, while I’m the only one without mine. It was disappointing, but my cue came and in the end it didn’t make much difference. Hopefully I can get my case back and put on some new clothes for tomorrow.”

Defending champion Fan Zhengyi was beaten at the first hurdle, succumbing to a 5-1 loss against world number 86 Michael Judge.

Fan was a shock winner in last season’s event, entering the competition as a 750-1 outsider. However, he upset the odds to land a stunning 10-9 win over Ronnie O’Sullivan in the final.

Irishman Judge struggled to make an impact having returned to the tour through Q School at the start of the last campaign. He’s made a strong start this time around and will now face Welshman Daniel Wells in the last 64.

Wu Yize produced an impressive display to land a 5-1 defeat of recent BetVictor Championship League winner Luca Brecel. Wu compiled breaks of 52, 80, 66, 88 and 109 en route to victory.

Brecel came into this week as the early leader of the BetVictor Series, where the player who accumulates the most prize money over the eight qualifying events will land an eye watering £150,000 bonus. The Belgian will be leapfrogged into the top spot by the end of this week.

Zhou Yuelong edged to a narrow 5-4 defeat of Graeme Dott, while former European Masters winner Jimmy Robertson beat Andy Hicks 5-2.

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