Ding Junhui
The current PTC Grand Finals champion and Asia's most successful ever player.

 

D.O.B. 01 Apr 1987

 

Lives Sheffield


 

Turned Pro 2003

 

Ranking Tournament Victories Nine - China Open 2005; UK Championship 2005, 2009; Northern Ireland Trophy 2006; Welsh Open 2012; PTC Grand Finals 2013; Shanghai Masters 2013; Indian Open 2013; International Championship 2013

 

World Snooker Tour prize money 2011/12 + 2012/13 seasons (ranking events / PTCs only) £299,853

 

Highest Tournament Break 147 - five times

 

The 2012/13 season was a patchy one for Ding but he did experience the joy of winning his sixth world ranking title at the Players Tour Championship Grand Finals in Galway.

 

The Chinese ace won several close matches en route to the crown, and in the final came from 3-0 down to beat Neil Robertson 4-3 to clinch the title. "I have more experience now and I know I can win close matches. It's all about thinking, and keeping my concentration," said Ding, who gave a rare show of emotion by beating his chest after potting the last few balls.

 

He also made a 147 during the tournament, the fifth of his career, and he has set one of his ambitions as matching the record of 11 maximum breaks held by Ronnie O'Sullivan and Stephen Hendry.

 

At the World Championship he reached the quarter-finals but then suffered a 13-7 defeat against Barry Hawkins and admitted that the morning sessions in Sheffield do not suit him.  He said: "I can't sleep properly the night before. Sometimes something bad that's happened keeps battering away in your mind so you can't sleep. Some players get help from experienced players but I haven't got anyone to help me so I have to do everything myself."

 

In 2012 he won his fifth ranking title at the Welsh Open, beating Mark Selby 9-6 in the final with a fine display of break-building.

 

It was his first full ranking title since 2009 and he has now won more ranking titles than all other Asian players put together.

 


Ding partnered Liang Wenbo to the top prize in the 2011 PTT-EGAT World Cup in Thailand, beating Northern Ireland in the final.

 

In 2011 he won snooker's most prestigious invitation event, the Masters, for the first time. He faced Marco Fu in the first ever all-Asian final in a major snooker tournament. Ding performed brilliantly, making a century and seven more breaks over 60 in a 10-4 victory.

 

In 2011 he also got to the semi-finals at the Crucible for the first time. Ding looked favourite for the final when he led Judd Trump 15-14, only for the young Englishman to hit back to win a classic contest 17-15.

 

At the 2009 UK Championship he beat John Higgins in the final, coming from 7-6 down to win 10-8.

 

He is the youngest player ever to win three ranking titles, and the only one other than Higgins to do so before his 20th birthday.

 

His first title came at the 2005 China Open when he delighted his fans in Beijing by coming from 4-1 down to beat Hendry 9-5 in the final. His second came later that year at the UK Championship - his first major title on British soil and one which demonstrated to BBC Sport viewers the extent of his talent. It was exuberant youth against experience and wisdom at the tournament's conclusion and he comfortably got the better of Steve Davis, 30 years his senior, 10-6.

 

His third came at the 2006 Northern Ireland Trophy in Belfast when he beat Ronnie O'Sullivan 9-6.

 

Ding has become one of China's most famous sportsmen, and is at the spearhead of an emerging army of Chinese players making an impact on the professional Tour.

 

In 2006 he came back from the Asian Games in Qatar, clutching a haul of three gold medals for the individual, doubles and team disciplines.

 

Ding won the World under-21 Championship at the age of 15, beating David John 11-9 in the final in Latvia.

 

His hobbies away from snooker include swimming, badminton and watching Jackie Chan movies. He also enjoys football -and supports Manchester United. He lives in Sheffield with Chinese girlfriend Apple.