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Last Updated: Sunday, 4 February 2007, 19:46 GMT
Murphy cruises to Malta victory
Shaun Murphy lines up a pott
Murphy is back to his 2005 form
Shaun Murphy overwhelmed Ryan Day 9-4 in the final of the Malta Cup to win the second ranking title of his career.

The 2005 world champion took the first four frames and raced to a 6-1 lead by the end of the opening session.

Welshman Day fared better in the second session and scored the only century break of the final (102) when pulling the score back to 8-3.

But Englishman Murphy sealed victory in the 13th frame for his first title since his shock win at the Crucible.

It was a confident performance from Murphy but Day was guilty of errors at key moments.

He missed a straightforward green in the second frame to allow Day to steal it on the black and also squandered gilt-edged chances in the following two frames.

In some ways this is more significant to me than winning the world championship because I've had to play a different style of snooker to do it

Shaun Murphy

In the final frame of the first session, he surrendered ideal position on a run of 45 and then jawed a tricky red, leaving Murphy to take the frame with a 51 clearance.

As well as a 30,000 prize, the tournament victory will propel Murphy to fifth in the provisional world ranking list.

The Englishman admitted that it was a relief to get rid of the one-hit wonder label.

"I know it's only been a couple of years but you do feel as though there's a monkey on your back," he said.

"It's a tiresome weight to carry around but now no-one can say that I'm a flash in the pan. I'm a tournament winner in the plural and that's a relief.

I had chances virtually every frame

Ryan Day

"In some ways this is more significant to me than winning the world championship because I've had to play a different style of snooker to do it.

"At the world championship I was just in a rich vein of form but I've come here as an established top 16 player and got the job done with a more all-round game. That means a lot."

For Day, there was the consolation of the 15,000 runner's-up cheque, the biggest payday of his eight-year professional career, and a rise of six places to 12th in the ranking list.

"I had chances virtually every frame and I was obviously very disappointed with the way I played," he said.

"But I've had a tremendous week and now I'm looking forward to the Welsh Open in Newport."

SEE ALSO
Malta exit a sickener for Hendry
02 Feb 07 |  Snooker
Hendry reaches century milestone
30 Jan 07 |  Snooker
Holt shocks O'Sullivan in Malta
31 Jan 07 |  Snooker
Davis makes early Malta Cup exit
29 Jan 07 |  Snooker
Dott claims victory over Bingham
28 Jan 07 |  Snooker


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