Scott Donaldson claimed his first professional title by lifting the Championship League Snooker trophy in Leicester on Thursday.
The Scot, who has been a professional on the Main Tour for eight years, only just squeezed past the round-robin stage of the Winners’ Group.
Three wins from his six league encounters, plus a superior frame advantage, sent him through in fourth place at the expense of Neil Robertson.
By contrast, world champion Judd Trump raced through the group phase with a 100% record from his six opening ties.
However, the world number one’s bid for a record-extending fourth Championship League Snooker title was ended by Donaldson in the semi-finals.
The latter subsequently won an all-Scottish affair with Graeme Dott courtesy of a whitewash scoreline to etch his name onto the silverware.
Donaldson gained promotion to the professional circuit in 2012 after winning the European Amateur Championship that year.
The 25 year-old’s progression has been slow and steady, but the Perth potter has demonstrated a greater level of consistency in the last couple of years.
Since 2017, Donaldson has reached the semi-finals of ranking events four times, including in the lucrative China Open almost a year ago.
Those kinds of displays have helped him break into the top 25 in the world rankings, and the next step will be for him to make the further leap into the elite bracket.
The Championship League is an invitational event, of course, and will have no bearing on his position on the rankings list.
However, any success will act as a boost to a player’s confidence and it will be interesting to see how Donaldson’s game can develop from here.
The world number 24, who reached the tournament’s finale by winning Group 4 in October, pockets £10,000 for the glory in addition to numerous frame-winning bonuses that the unique competition offers.
Donaldson will also compete in the prestigious Champion of Champions next season as a result of his triumph at the Morningside Arena.
Featured Photo: WST