Bingham Edges Lee To Take APTC1 Title

We might still be in June, but already it has been a summer to remember for Stuart Bingham as having recently lifted the Pink Ribbon trophy in Gloucester, yesterday he defeated Stephen Lee in a close-fought decider to capture the APTC1 title in Zhangjiagang…

Photo by Stuart Bingham

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  • Click here to view the latest projected seedings

The final between Stuart and Stephen would predictably be a close one throughout, during which they were never separated by more than a frame, Stuart having led at 1-0, before Lee hit back to lead 2-1 and 3-2.

Eventually however, a seventh and deciding frame was required in order to separate them and in a microcosm of the match, that too would prove close, the scorelines level at 36-36 with just one red left, before Stuart eventually went on to take the title on the final black.

In doing so, Stuart takes home the £10,000 top prize, in addition to 2,000 important ranking points which see him rise three places from 17th to 14th in the latest projected seedings list. As one of the three APTC event winners, he also becomes the first man to qualify for the PTC Grand Finals next March, a tournament which Stuart missed out on last season.

Stuart is quoted by Eurosport as follows:

“Last year I started the season well then fell away, but this time I want to keep the form going,”

“I came out here for the three events just aiming to win one of them, and I’ve got a trophy already so anything else is a bonus.”

“I’m full of confidence now and I want to do well in the next two events.”

“It’s great to already have a place guaranteed in the PTC Grand Finals because I missed it last year. But I’ll probably still play in all the other PTC events because I’m the type to go anywhere and play in anything.”

Earlier in the day, Stuart was able to come through a 4-2 winner against promising Welsh youngster Michael White, while Lee was able to defeat Chinese tour débutante Chen Zhe by the same scoreline.

It is hard to gauge the level of success of the event without having seen the action and crowd levels, while the news filtering out from the China has from what I have seen, come predominantly from the players and referees via Twitter (many thanks to Eirian Williams in particular on the update front).

Thankfully however, next week this should be a little easier as the venue stage of the first full-ranking event of the season gets underway with the Wuxi Classic from Monday. Stay tuned for my full tournament preview later this weekend…