Often dubbed "the greatest snooker player never to win a ranking event", Anthony Hamilton stunned the snooker World with a remarkable week at the German Masters in Berlin. After epic victories against former World Champion Mark Williams, current World number one Mark Selby, Masters finalist Barry Hawkins and 2015 World Champion Stuart Bingham, Hamilton fully deserved the crown when he saw off Ali Carter in an exciting final.
Advantage Carter in the afternoon session
Carter undoubtedly settled the better after starting the match as favourite. He took a commanding 3-0 lead without playing his best snooker as the World number 14 sealed a hat-trick of tactical successes. However Hamilton was not prepared to let Carter stroll towards the title before the afternoon session had culminated and struck back with two low-scoring frames of his own as the pair continued to spar against each other.
With a tense atmosphere besetting the Tempodrom, Carter leaned on his experience to formulate the balls as he wished. An exquisite century was followed by a 54, before Hamilton stole the final frame of the session with his first half-century compilation, a neat 56. That moment was to be a crucial turning point in the contest.
Hamilton creates history
At 5-3 down, Hamilton would have been well aware of the importance of a good start to the evening session. A tactical opening frame took him back within one, before a match-high 118 drew him level. The outsider then followed that frame with a 73 and 74 as he took the lead for the first time in the final.
Carter needed a response and he looked to be making it in frame 13 before a break of 53 broke down. The table was left open for Hamilton and he duly responded with an excellent 70 to move just one frame away from the historic title. Carter showed his resilience to pull a frame back, but a mishit safety attempt with the reds spread left the door open for Hamilton.
The 1999 British Open and 2002 China Open runner-up compiled a nervy 57 as he did just what he needed to earn the momentous title. The World of snooker stood and applauded as one, with one of their finest stalwarts finally inking his name in the record books.