Ali Carter came from behind to in the end rather easily see off Marco Fu 9-6 in the German Masters final in Berlin.
Being a member of the Top 16 and the runner-up at last year’s World Championship, Englishman Carter naturally started as the bookies favourite despite the fact that his opponent had arguably played the better throughout the week.
Indeed, Hong Kong’s Fu had compiled five centuries in his previous rounds, with Carter not only unable to accumulate any but also having advanced from his semi-final encounter against Neil Robertson with a high break of a paltry 46.
This form was reflected in an often scrappy opening session which was slightly edged by Fu.
The former Grand Prix and Premier League champion won the opening frame in just shy of an hour and went on to lead 3-1 at the mid-session interval after missing the 14th red on a 147 attempt.
Carter upped his performance and a break of 70 helped him get back on level terms but after knocking in an 83 in the seventh frame Fu established a 5-3 advantage following the afternoon’s play.
However, the match completely turned when the players resumed a few hours later for the evening session.
Carter, clearly focused and energised after the rest, opened with two spectacular tons, his first of the tournament, of 116 and 121 to once again tie it up and led for the first time by taking the next as well.
By then it had been more than an hour since Fu’s last pot as he struggled to regain a foothold in the encounter.
Carter had chances to keep the pressure on but allowed Fu an opportunity to draw level at the final mid-session interval.
For whatever reason, though, that lifeline was not enough to settle the 35 year-old and he couldn’t offer any serious challenge thereafter.
Carter had to resort back to his battling qualities as the break-building skills from earlier deserted him but had more than enough in the tank to claim his third ranking event title – following successes at the Welsh Open and Shanghai Masters in 2009 and 2010 respectively.
The 33 year-old threatened retirement only 14 months ago after a dismal spell in his career that saw him drop out of the game’s elite in the rankings.
This was in large part due to his well documented battle with Crohn’s disease but he has since managed to improve his diet and fitness levels, which has in turn seen an upsurge in his fortunes on the baize.
After losing to Ronnie O’Sullivan at the Crucible last May, Carter only narrowly failed to reach the final of the UKs in York when he let an 8-4 dramatically lead slip to Shaun Murphy.
But he continued his good form with victory in the second Championship League group at the turn of the New Year and he has now firmly re-established himself as a top contender with the triumph in the Tempodrom.
The other major winner of the week was again the German hosts, who put on a fabulous event and provided a brilliant atmosphere each day with 2500 people enthusiastically enjoying the final.
Hopefully, the continued success of these tournaments in the country will inspire young Germans to pick up a cue so the crowd can have one of their own to cheer .
But for now, the moment belongs to Ali Carter, the 2013 German Masters champion.