Promising youngster Rodion Judin was in a league of his own as he claimed the Latvian National Snooker Championship for a fifth time last weekend.
Held at the Hotel A1 in the capital city of Riga, over 40 players took part in the event organised by the Latvian Billiards Federation, a member of the World Snooker Federation.
Judin – winner of this title for the first time in 2014 – made his intentions clear from the start, coasting through the groups stage and opening knockout rounds. The 22-year-old dropped his first frame of the tournament against Andrejs Pripjoks in the last four but still ran out a comfortable 4-1 victor.
The final was a repeat of the title decider from two years previously as 2015 winner Maris Volajs ousted Aleksandrs Zaicevs via a deciding frame in the other semi-final affair. Judin eased into a 5-0 lead, and although Volajs avoided a whitewash, the Salaspils cueist had plenty to spare with a 7-2 triumph.
Judin has featured as a wildcard in the professional Kaspersky Riga Masters on multiple occasions and regularly competes in major international amateur events. Last year he won several matches at Q-School and earlier this year he qualified for the knockout stages of the World Snooker Federation Open in Malta.
“I’m glad to have won what is my 16th national title overall (across different categories) and hope there are many more to come. I would like to dedicate this win to my fiancée Alena,” said Judin.
Results from the quarter-finals onwards
Maris Volajs 4-1 Anna Prisjazhnuka
Aleksejs Jankovskis 2-4 Aleksandrs Zaicevs
Nikita Bazilevichs 3-4 Andrejs Pripjoks
Sergey Soversennijs 0-4 Rodion Judin
Volajs 4-3 Zaicevs
Pripjoks 1-4 Judin
Volajs 2-7 Judin