David Lilley claimed the most important title of his profession as he dethroned defending champion Jimmy White 5-3 within the closing on the Crucible Theatre to win the 2021 ROKiT World Seniors Snooker Championship.
Taking part in within the closing phases of this occasion for the primary time, Lilley’s title journey started in January when he entered the preliminary Q-College qualifying competitors in Studying. 9 match wins and 4 months later, he was lifting the trophy on the sport’s most iconic venue.
The 45-year-old from Washington – who was making his aggressive debut on the Crucible – had eradicated Philip Williams, Ken Doherty and Patrick Wallace to succeed in the title match. Throughout his late-night quarter-final conflict with Doherty the day earlier than he produced a steely effort of 69 in a deciding body.
Lilley settled his nerves within the closing with a 74 break to say the opener earlier than persevering with his working theme all through the match of pinching shut frames when crafting a powerful break of 35 to win body two on the pink. He then chalked up the third to place himself in agency management.
Aiming for his third successive world seniors title – and fourth total – White had achieved little mistaken. He ultimately managed to get a foothold within the tie, setting up a cultured run of 85 to enter the mid-session interval on a optimistic notice.
The Whirlwind continued to achieve momentum on resumption, racking up contributions of 42, 63 and 56 within the following two frames for parity at 3-3 and to threaten one other epic restoration after getting back from 4-0 all the way down to Doherty in final 12 months’s memorable closing.
A nervy seventh body ensued, although, with White squandering an excellent likelihood on the colors to take the entrance. Lilley leaped on his surprising alternative to retake the lead at 4-3 earlier than maintaining his cool with what was successfully a match profitable break of 69 in body eight.
Chatting with Rob Walker after his triumph, Lilley mentioned: “I’m a bit speechless, I didn’t suppose I’d get this emotional. Jimmy is my hero – he’s everybody’s hero. I actually don’t know what to say; I’m simply so glad.”
In addition to the title and trophy, Lilley banks £15,000 and is ready to say a spot on the prestigious Champion of Champions later this 12 months in Bolton.