Masters 2020: Another shock as Shaun Murphy beats defending champion Judd Trump

Judd Trump became the latest big-name casualty at the Masters as he lost 6-3 to Shaun Murphy at Alexandra Palace.

With Ronnie O'Sullivan absent, and Neil Robertson, Mark Selby, Ding Junhui and Mark Allen all beaten earlier in the week, everything looked in place for a strong title defence from the world number one.

But despite playing some of the best snooker seen so far, all three of his frames coming courtesy of centuries, Trump's play became sloppy and Murphy was in place to capitalise.

The match began with a brilliant 128 break, Trump already showboating as he completed the full clearance courtesy of a gorgeous cannon to release the final pink.

Murphy hit back, taking his opportunity in the second frame, and then went ahead with a 71 break after Trump had over-cut a relatively straightforward black.

Unperturbed, Trump's 116 break in the fourth frame saw them head in level at the interval, before the left-hander produced surely the shot of the championship as an audacious red set up a 119 break for a 3-2 lead.

Few would have expected that to be Trump's final contribution to the match score, but after running out of position and playing a sloppy safety in frame six, he left the door open once more and Murphy conjured a fine blue to the top pocket in a 77 break.

Again in frame seven, it was Trump who appeared in the ascendancy, but another uncharacteristic miss handed the frame to Murphy, who once again was nothing if not ruthless with a 52 clearance.

Murphy took the next after Trump missed a yellow with the rest he would have expected to pot, and more rallying saw 37-year-old Murphy complete the fifth upset in as many matches so far this week.

"It's nice to know that those little counter clearances are there," Murphy said.

"It's a little practice routine that I do. I get the last couple of reds, all the colours, throw them all round the table and see if I can clear up.

"I think I only beat Judd in two of the statistics, one being rest play. It just shows that they (stats) are a bit of a waste of time."

Trump was left to reflect upon a missed opportunity, having showcased some of his very best form yet undermined it by presenting several frame-winning opportunities to Murphy.

"It’s quite a hard game to evaluate really," he said.

"I was the better player most of the game, he was just making the important clearances. It was a strange game, I didn’t feel like I played that badly.

"There were a few bad cannons at times, but I can’t really work out how it was 6-3.

"It wasn’t that many missed balls, just a couple of bad safeties. He was just getting away with one or two more than me.

"He played some good snooker, didn’t miss that many, played some good safeties, but I still don’t feel like I got outplayed by him. Every time I made a mistake he punished me.

"I didn’t play that badly, it was just one of those games where everything at the end of the game was going wrong. You just have to go away and try and win the next tournament."


The second match of the day was a more one-sided affair as John Higgins marched into the quarter-finals, where he will face Ali Carter, courtesy of a 6-1 win over Barry Hawkins.

Hawkins was open about his performance afterwards, saying he had struggled to knuckle down in the practice room.

"We've all been there," said Higgins of his opponent. "I think Barry was just wanting to get out of the place at the end.

"He'll be back, he'll be a big contender at the Worlds as he always is. It's tough sometimes, this game.

"I missed a lot but I think half of that was maybe down to (the fact) I could see Barry was really struggling.

"It would be good to have a good run here, it really would."


Watch the London Masters LIVE on Eurosport and Eurosport Player with analysis from Ronnie O'Sullivan, Jimmy White and Neal Foulds.

Masters draw & tournament bracket

ROUND ONE

Scroll down for daily schedule and results

  • Judd Trump 3-6 Shaun Murphy
  • Ding Junhui 3-6 Joe Perry
  • Mark Selby 4-6 Ali Carter
  • John Higgins 6-1 Barry Hawkins
  • Neil Robertson 5-6 Stephen Maguire
  • Mark Allen 1-6 David Gilbert
  • Kyren Wilson v Jack Lisowski
  • Mark Williams v Stuart Bingham

Tournament schedule and round-by-round results

  • All matches up to and including semi-finals best of 11; final best of 19

ROUND ONE

Sunday 12 January
Afternoon Session (1300 - BBC/Eurosport)

  • Ding Junhui 3-6 Joe Perry

Evening Session (1900 - BBC/Eurosport)

  • Mark Selby 4-6 Ali Carter

Monday 13 January
Afternoon Session (1300 - BBC/Eurosport)

  • Neil Robertson 5-6 Stephen Maguire

Evening Session (1900 - BBC/Eurosport)

  • Mark Allen 1-6 David Gilbert

Tuesday 14 January
Afternoon Session (1300 - BBC/Eurosport)

  • Judd Trump 3-6 Shaun Murphy

Evening Session (1900 - BBC/Eurosport)

  • John Higgins 6-1 Barry Hawkins

Wednesday 15 January
Afternoon Session (1300 - BBC/Eurosport)

  • Kyren Wilson v Jack Lisowski

Evening Session (1900 - BBC/Eurosport)

  • Mark Williams v Stuart Bingham

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