Chinese snooker "back wave" struck

  Our reporter Liu Yao

  Going through four levels and winning the trophy-Recently, at the Snooker Masters in the UK, 20-year-old Chinese player Yan Bingtao won the championship with a strong opponent and reached a new peak in his career.

  Standing in the spotlight, the waves of this "post-00" teenager are enough to make the snooker world admire: surpassing Ding Junhui and becoming the youngest "master" in China; like O'Sullivan and becoming the youngest in the Masters in 25 years The champion...The time and challenge belonging to Yan Bingtao has just begun. How strong can Chinese snooker's "back wave" be?

People will wait and see.

  Won the championship of the "Three Big Games" for the first time

  As one of the "three big competitions" of snooker, only the top 16 players in the world can get the "invitation letter" of the event.

Although this year's Masters was moved out of London and held empty due to the epidemic, the gold content and star flavor of the competition remained the same.

  With his impressive performance since last season, Yan Bingtao made his debut in the Masters with a world ranking of 11, and thus embarked on a magical journey.

In the first scene, against the world's second-ranked Australian star Robertson, Yan Bingtao pulled 3 games in a row after lagging behind 3:5, and staged a reversal. Then, against Maguire and Bingham, Yan Bingtao fought hard to 5: 5 draws, and won steadily in the deciding game; in the final against Higgins, a veteran two rounds older than his own, Yan Bingtao suddenly exerted his strength at the critical moment of the 8:8 draw, and finally had the last laugh.

  "Very complete and perfect." Yan Bingtao said of his performance, "I won the final of the 16 players, and I gained a lot of confidence and positive energy."

  In 4 games, 3 of them reached the deciding game, and Yan Bingtao's champion was thrilling and very convincing.

Huge potential, mature mentality, and a calm "big heart" have won him praises from many world famous players.

  "At such a young age, he has won brilliant achievements. There is no doubt that he is expected to become a world champion." Higgins used "young and mature" to describe this star of hope.

A few years ago, Higgins also commented that Yan Bingtao reminded him of the famous snooker Steve Davis in his youth.

  Maguire also said that Yan Bingtao was young but already outstanding in defense.

He believes that Yan Bingtao's world ranking will soon rise to the top eight.

  "Rocket" O'Sullivan also said: "We not only see the emergence of a new championship, he may also be a player who will win many championships in the future."

  Robertson said: "Yan Bingtao is 20 years old this year, but he has the experience that some people only have at the age of 40. He has the temperament that he should have: desire, hard work, and determination to win the championship. It is true that these qualities can be seen in young players. It's a good thing."

  The first show is to win the championship. In the "Champion Club" of the Masters, a group of star-studded names are welcoming Yan Bingtao to join-Hendry, John Spencer, Mark Selby...

  The mind casts a calm style

  Snooker is a "born pride" sport, but Yan Bingtao's experience of practicing snooker when he was young was full of embarrassment and hardship.

  At the age of 9, Yan Bingtao left his hometown of Shandong and went to Beijing to specialize in snooker.

My father gave up his job as a worker in a pharmaceutical factory and rode Yan Bingtao to practice football every day.

In order to save money, the father and son rented in the suburbs of Beijing. There is only one table and one bed in a room at 280 yuan a month.

In Yan Bingtao's memory, in winter, because he couldn't pay the heating bill, "you also have to wear down jackets in the house, and put a warm water bag in the bed at night."

  Such hard days lasted for nearly 5 years.

Until 2014, Yan Bingtao entered the World Snooker Academy built by the China Billiards Association training base in cooperation with the World Professional Snooker Association, and thus embarked on the highway to the professional stadium.

  When he entered the academy, Yan Bingtao, who was only 14 at the time, won a blockbuster in the World Snooker Amateur Championship.

Later, he partnered with Zhou Yuelong, defeating Higgins and Maguire in the 2015 Snooker World Cup, winning the cup with a dark horse.

  With age "reaching the standard" and improvement of mentality and mentality, Yan Bingtao finally got the opportunity to move to the professional arena.

After embarking on a trip to England, Yan Bingtao's mind and mentality became more mature, and he kept breaking records on the court.

In 2017, he reached the World Snooker Championship through three qualifying rounds, becoming the first "post-00" player in the history of the World Championships.

In 2019, Yan Bingtao won the first ranking championship at the Riga Masters. Coupled with the semi-finals of the British Championships and the runner-up of the Welsh Open, the world ranking has reached the top 16.

  On the court, Yan Bingtao has a calm temperament and mature mentality that transcends his age.

He never pursued gorgeous strokes or sharp performances, so much so that "Billiard Emperor" Hendry and O'Sullivan both bluntly did not appreciate this "unpleasant" playing style.

  But in Yan Bingtao's view, players with reasonable play and strong resistance to pressure like Selby and Higgins are the "masters" in his heart.

"If you want to be a master, you have to be like them. I can't change my age, I can only catch up with the minds of older players." Yan Bingtao said.

  In the past few years, Yan Bingtao has been releasing his potential and improving his status.

Under his steady defense, O'Sullivan, Higgins and other "big guys" have encountered zero seals in the game against him.

  Now, standing in front of Yan Bingtao is the world's number one Trump.

Before the two played against each other 6 times, Yan Bingtao did not win.

However, in the most recent 2020 Snooker World Championship, Yan Bingtao once led Trump with 5:3, but unfortunately he finally lost 11:13 regrettably, only one step away from defeating the world number one.

  "Gemini" looks forward to shining

  In 2009, when Yan Bingtao embarked on the path of snooker, it was the peak moment when Ding Junhui won the British Championships for the second time and reached the top of the world.

At that time, Ding Junhui, in his early twenties, was as young and ambitious as Yan Bingtao.

  If I practice every day, I can be like Ding Junhui?

Yan Bingtao thought.

"But I didn't expect that if you want to be like him, you have to practice for more than 10 hours a day."

  Since 2005, Ding Junhui's growth in the world snooker arena has opened up the development space for Chinese snooker sports.

Today, the 33-year-old Ding Junhui is still active on the table, to climb the peak of his career.

After becoming a father, he has more concerns and responsibilities in his life.

Ding Junhui once said that he won't be a problem playing for another 5 to 10 years and he will continue to stick to it.

  Infected by Pathfinder, Yan Bingtao has also become a rising star of Chinese snooker by virtue of his "10 hours a day" practice.

It is also a young fame and a lot of attention. After the aspiration of the Masters, more people regard Yan Bingtao as the next Ding Junhui of Chinese snooker, expecting him to climb the peak again and touch the trophy of the world championship.

  In April this year, the World Snooker Championships will start again. Ding Junhui and Yan Bingtao, the pair of snooker twin stars, will continue to attack China's first world snooker championship.

In 2020, the two appeared together in the World Championships. Although they missed the top 8, their performance was still impressive.

In addition, young players such as Zhou Yuelong, Zhao Xintong, and Li Xing have also emerged in the world arena.

In the future snooker arena, Chinese players are expected to set off a more violent "back wave."