The manner in which Mark Williams won the China Open title for a third time yesterday served as a reminder of just how good he is when playing at the top of his game.
This was the sort of snooker Williams was producing in that golden period a decade ago when he was world no.1 and captured all of the game’s major titles.
What a difference a year makes. Last season he had to go to Prestatyn to play in the qualifiers having dropped out of the top 16 after a terrible run of results.
His confidence was low and there was a danger he would carry on sliding away while his contemporaries John Higgins and Ronnie O’Sullivan continued to be successful.
But Mark has always loved snooker and rededicated himself. The results came and he immediately earned promotion back into the elite group.
This season he reached the Grand Prix semi-finals, the same stage of the Wembley Masters and the quarter-finals of the Welsh Open.
In Beijing Williams beat Jamie Cope, Higgins, Marco Fu and Ali Carter and produced a fantastic final session display against Ding Junhui in the final, winning six of the seven frames played to complete a 10-6 victory.
His quarter of the Crucible draw includes Ronnie O’Sullivan, Mark Selby, Stephen Hendry, Liang Wenbo and Ken Doherty so it will be a hard slog if he is to land a third world title.
But on this form nobody will want to play him, at the World Championship or anywhere else.