• China Open

Robertson sees off Selby fightback to win China Open

ESPN staff
March 31, 2013
Neil Robertson dominated the China Open final © PA Photos

Neil Robertson clinched his maiden China Open title on Sunday, beating Mark Selby 10-6 in the Beijing final.

In a best-of-19-frames encounter, Robertson led 6-1 after the first session to leave him requiring a further four for victory when the players returned to the green baize.

That opening session had been scheduled for nine frames but, due to the lengthy nature of the contest, had to be halted at seven, leaving a potential 12 to be played later in the day.

In the end, nine were needed as Robertson saw off his rival's attempted fightback, staying strong for a satisfying victory.

Selby, who will return to the top of the world rankings after reaching the last-eight this week, looked anything but the world's best player in the opening session as he was forced to spend lengthy periods on his seat.

He had been unimpressive in his semi-final win - despite the 6-2 scoreline - against Shaun Murphy, his highest break a less-than-spectacular 68 en route to Sunday's showpiece. Like Robertson, Selby had never won the Beijing event, and his wait will go on.

The Jester from Leicester actually took the lead with an opening 58, but Robertson hit back with runs of 50 and 91. The next two frames were arguably the most crucial as the Australian snatched them both on the colours, before adding two more to set up a huge 6-1 advantage.

Selby has been the master of the comeback in recent years and it appeared he was set to pull off another when he amassed breaks of 81, 125 and 66 to close the gap to 6-4. But at that stage Robertson kicked again with a run of 110 en route to the title.

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