Mark Selby bounced back from a disappointing Masters by winning Championship League Group Five in Coventry on Tuesday.
The world number one won only half of his six round-robin fixtures but managed to qualify for the semi-finals thanks to a superior frame difference record.
Selby subsequently edged Stephen Maguire 3-2 in the last four before compiling breaks of 97, 82, and 59 in overcoming Barry Hawkins in the final.
England’s David Gilbert had topped the group stage with five wins out of six but exited in the first play-off round to Hawkins in a whitewash scoreline.
However, Championship League Group Five will go down in the history books for Gilbert as the competition that produced the 147th maximum break in professional snooker.
Gilbert, runner-up in the World Open this season, compiled the perfect frame in his 3-1 defeat to Maguire in the final group encounter, pocketing £500 for his efforts.
The 37 year-old wasn’t even supposed to be involved in this group, replacing the ill Luca Brecel just 90 minutes before the action got going on Monday morning.
While it is a shame that such an historic moment for the sport took place behind closed doors – only his opponent and referee Paul Collier were in the room – it still represents a special moment for the Englishman.
The first 147 break was compiled in 1982 by Steve Davis while [easyazon_link identifier=”1785314440″ locale=”UK” tag=”snookerhq-21″]Ronnie O’Sullivan[/easyazon_link] boasts the record for the most made with 15.
Well done Dave Gilbert on making the 147th 147 break in professional snooker. It was an honour to play a very small part in a piece of our great sports history. #StillLuvsItIDo
— Paul Collier (@welshref) January 22, 2019
Selby, meanwhile, earned £6,100 and has the additional reward of advancing to the Winners’ Group in March, where more prize money and a place in the lucrative Champion of Champions will be up for grabs.
The 35 year-old joins Neil Robertson, Jack Lisowski, Judd Trump, and Stuart Bingham, who each already booked their spots earlier this month.
There are two more available positions with Hawkins, Maguire, Gilbert, and fifth placed Ali Carter getting one more chance in the next group.
Anthony McGill and Joe Perry have been eliminated after propping up Championship League Group Five.
On Wednesday and Thursday, Group Six will take place at the Ricoh Arena with Mark Davis, Martin Gould, and Xiao Guodong entering the fray.