Stuart Bingham enjoyed one of the nights of his career as he won two matches in the Premier League 6-0.
Not only did he win a thousand pounds for each of his frames but an extra grand for four complimentary centuries ensured that the Englishman ended the evening with an unbelievable pay packet of £16,000 – more than what a player picks up for winning a PTC event!
The 2011 Australian Open champion was in the form of his life for the most part as he romped to a resounding whitewash win over world no.1 Mark Selby with the aid of two tons.
And he added superb breaks of 135 and 127 in his second tie against Neil Robertson to notch up a similar scoreline and complete one of the most memorable nights in the prestigious event’s history.
The sum could have been even greater only he missed a tricky pink in the final frame while on a break of 92.
The brace of victories means that Bingham has qualified for the semi-finals next month – topping Group A – while Selby goes home empty-handed.
The result also ensures that Robertson and Ding Junhui’s match in a few weeks will decide the second qualifier from the group.
A similar situation will materialise in Group B as John Higgins edged Judd Trump 4-2 in the night’s middle match to ensure his progress to the last four.
With Trump and Northern Irishman Mark Allen on the same number of points and frames won, it ensures a dramatic evening in store when the pair meet in a couple of weeks as whoever reaches three frames first in their clash will advance, while sending the other home.
But the night belongs to 36 year-old Bingham, who is contesting his first ever Premier League and has failed to yet lose an encounter in the competition.
A likeable guy both on and off the circuit, Bingham has taken his opportunity to compete alongside the game’s elite by the scruff of the neck and has now been deservedly rewarded.
Having claimed his first ranking event Down Under in the summer of last year, Bingham has gone from strength to strength, adding a further PTC title at the outset of this campaign while solidifying his place in the Top 16 of the world rankings.
With a wedding in Cyprus on the horizon next May, Bingham’s run of form could not be coming at a better time and with the confidence gained from tonight’s performance who knows how well he may fare next week at the lucrative International Championship in China.