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Stuart Bingham inspired by Mark Allen 'no bottle' jibe

Bingham was inspired by Allen's "no bottle" jibe. Credit: PA

Stuart Bingham has revealed how a casual jibe from Northern Irish cueman Mark Allen spurred him to become world champion.

Allen claimed in 2011 that Bingham had "no bottle", but it came back to haunt the Antrim man when he lost to the Basildon potter at the Australian Goldfields Open that year.

Bingham went on to claim that title, his first major victory after over ten barren years as a professional, and the 38-year-old has gone from strength to strength, adding another major trophy at the Shanghai Masters this season and now the World Championship.

I've got to give thanks to Mark Allen. He got my back up that week in Australia by saying I had no bottle, but since then that's all changed.

I'm world champion but I'm going to be the same person, I'll be playing in all the tournaments and hopefully I'll be a good role model as world champion.

Any kids out there growing up wanting to play should stick at it. That's what I've done.

– Snooker World Champions Stuart Bingham

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Stuart Bingham wins snooker world championship

Stuart Bingham has beaten Shaun Murphy 18-15 to win the Betfred snooker World Championship at the Crucible.

Stuart Bingham has claimed snooker's biggest prize after 20 years of trying Credit: PA Wire

The 38-year-old from Basildon defied all expectations to reach his first final in Sheffield, and pulled off a stunning victory, finishing with a break of 88 as his family looked on. Before the break was finished Bingham punched the air in jubilation.

The win made him the oldest world champion since Ray Reardon, who won in 1978 aged 45.

Asked to sum up what the title meant after 20 years of trying, Bingham said: "Everything. Twenty years as a pro. Blood, sweat, and tears, on the road, qualifying in places like Prestatyn and Malvern, places like that.

"Everything rolled into one, so many family and friends backing me, it's just been unbelievable."

Murphy through to World Championship final

Shaun Murphy. Credit: PA

Shaun Murphy powered through to the Betfred World Championship final and will vie for a second title after seeing off Barry Hawkins.

Armed with an overnight lead of 16-8, putting him one away from victory, Murphy had a short wait for a match-winning chance but it came in the second frame after Hawkins missed an early black.

Murphy fired in 83, clearing the table to seal a 17-9 win, to earn a shot at Stuart Bingham or Judd Trump in the title match.

Ronnie O'Sullivan risks fine after playing with no shoes

Ronnie O'Sullivan could be set for a fine after playing with no shoes on for some of his 2015 World Snooker Championship opener against qualifier Craig Steadman on Tuesday.

O'Sullivan could be fined for playing without shoes. Credit: PA

In terms of the scoreline, five-time champion O'Sullivan enjoyed a relatively comfortable time of it, emerging from the first session of the encounter - that had begun with him making a century break - with a 7-2 lead over Crucible debutant Steadman.

But the world number two, who suffered a broken ankle towards the end of last year, appeared in discomfort due to his footwear at one point and opted to remove his shoes, briefly playing on in his socks.

He subsequently borrowed a pair of shoes from tournament director Mike Ganley and put them on, but the World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association are looking into the matter to consider whether it constitutes a breach of its rules about members' dress code, which could see O'Sullivan handed a fine.

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Rocket Ronnie breaks another record

The 39-year-old fired in his 776th career century. Credit: PA

Ronnie O'Sullivan became snooker's most prolific century-maker as he cruised into the semi-finals of the Masters.

The five-time world champion eclipsed the record of Stephen Hendry as he reached his 776th career ton in the first frame of a convincing 6-1 win over Marco Fu at London's Alexandra Palace.

O'Sullivan to play Wells despite ankle injury

Ronnie O'Sullivan is set to begin his UK Championship campaign on Thursday, despite suffering a nasty ankle injury.

O'Sullivan is targeting a fifth victory in the tournament, which he first won as a 17-year-old in 1993, but a mishap which running in Essex this week means he will not go into the York event in the best physical shape.

The 38-year-old posted a picture on Twitter of him resting up his left ankle, which was severely swollen, adding the note: "Might be one legged Snooker at the #UKChampionship on Thursday."

However tournament organiser World Snooker has confirmed O'Sullivan "intends to play" his first-round match against Daniel Wells.

Banned snooker star fined over cue fraud

Disgraced snooker player Stephen Lee has been fined £1,815 after admitting a charge of fraud relating to his personal cue.

Stephen Lee has been fined £1,815 after admitting a charge of fraud. Credit: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

The court was told Lee, who was once ranked number five in the world, arranged to sell his personal £1,600 snooker cue to a fan through his Facebook page.

But although the man, who is based in Hong Kong, paid the money into Lee's wife's bank account, the cue was never sent - and Lee continued to play with it.

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