Robertson sets up Trump final
Neil Robertson paid tribute to new world number one Judd Trump ahead of the duo's showdown in the International Championship final on Sunday.
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Robertson booked his place in the showpiece event with a battling 9-5 win over Shaun Murphy to set up a clash with Trump, who hammered Peter Ebdon 9-1 on Friday to leapfrog Mark Selby at the top of the rankings.
Australian Robertson is aware that the UK Championship holder will be coming into Sunday in ominous form and brimming with confidence.
"Judd has changed his game, he doesn't go for as many shots as he used to and his safety has improved," Robertson told worldsnooker.com.
"He is number one in the world now so he's full of confidence. He's fantastic for the game and he has fun and enjoys his life, as he should do.
"Hopefully it will be a great match. He's had an extra day of rest so I need to get a good night's sleep tonight."
Robertson reeled off four frames in a row to take charge against Murphy, having fallen 3-1 down.
His clearing 142, which is the tournament's highest break, in the fifth frame gave the left-hander some impetus, before he got back to 3-3 and then 4-3 ahead.
He took the final frame of the session with a well-timed contribution of 68.
Although Murphy won two of the next three in the evening to trail by just a single frame, a crucial safety error on the green from the Englishman handed his opponent the initiative.
Robertson then took an 8-5 lead after another mistake from Murphy on the blue and two breaks of 21 in the next frame saw the 30-year-old to victory.
"I played really well in the afternoon session, then tonight the balls seemed to go awkward and there was a lot of safety," said Robertson.
"Shaun played a lot of good safety so I'm just happy to have got the better of him.
"When you play in China it's really important to adjust to the different time zone and the travelling as quickly as possible and this week I've done that better than I had before.
"Now I know what to do for future events here. To be in my first final in China is a really proud moment for me."
A prize of £125,000 is on offer for the winner of the tournament - in its first year and already on a par with the UK Championship for the second-biggest prize fund on the professional tour.
Robertson has an enviable record in finals, with just one defeat in 11 televised showpiece encounters, and has put that down to a relaxed approach as he bids to extend that run against Trump.
"I just approach them like any other match and play my own game," he said.
"I'll walk away with a smile on my face win or lose because I've had a great week. I won't get nervous, I enjoy playing in finals.
"I will attack when I can and try to play a good all-round game and counter Judd's strengths."