Judd Trump provided a moment of levity at the World Snooker Championship as he played a joke on the referee in the middle of his quarter-final.
On course for a century in his quarter-final against Stuart Bingham on Wednesday, Trump lost position and found himself snookered behind the pink with no obvious way of potting the brown he needed.
After taking some time to think, he had a word with referee Ben Williams, seemingly signalling something at the back of the auditorium causing a distraction.
Then, with Williams looking the other way, he flicked the pink away from the cue ball and pretended to continue with his break – much to the amusement of the Crucible audience.
There were laughs all round at the Sheffield venue as opponent Bingham and referee Williams saw the funny side.
It was a welcome moment of light relief for Trump, who had endured a torrid session up to that point, losing five in a row to allow Bingham to lead 8-5.
Trump, whose nicknames include the Ace and the Juddernaut, is known as one of the game’s entertainers, but he had spoken before the tournament about having lost his enjoyment of snooker.
He told the Sportsman: “My main aim in snooker always is to enjoy it, and at the moment I am not.
“So whether I have to start missing more events or even do what Ronnie did and miss a season out, I don’t know.”