DARREN Morgan did have plans to start winding down his snooker career, but it seems he still has a few years left in him after winning a fourth world masters championship in Doha.

The 51-year-old, title winner in 2007, 2009 and 2012, beat Aidan Owens 6-3 to lift the trophy – the Englishman had defeated Morgan in last year’s quarter-finals.

Five centuries and 22 breaks of more than 50 show just how well Morgan played during the tournament, although he was nearly knocked out by Indian potter Cherag Ramakrishnan in the last 32.

Morgan, from Newbridge, has now won nine world

titles altogether, and the

latest is one that means a lot to him.

“I hadn’t won the world masters for five years and I did think that if I didn’t win it this time then I was never going to win it again,” he said.

“As each year goes by the standard gets higher and more and more players are playing in the tournament.

“I’ve had a really good year, better than last year, and the only real disappointment was losing in the world team final alongside my brother.

“I won the European Masters and European Open, the world six reds and now the world masters.”

He added: “I did say last year that I wanted to wind things down what with my family and other things away from snooker.

“I don’t really know what the future holds for me at the moment.

“I don’t have to qualify next year for all of the events I’ve won this year so I could play them again.

“I’m number one in the men’s amateur rankings in Wales and at 51 I’m playing guys in their teens and early 20s who are in their prime.”

Morgan won all four of his group stage games in Qatar before that scare against Ramakrishnan.

He got through on the last pink in the deciding frame and then eased past Ireland’s Brian McPhee 4-0 and India’s Rafath Habib 4-1 to set-up a semi-final with Alok Kumar.

The Indian had no answer to Morgan’s scoring power and was thrashed 5-1, while Owens recorded a 5-2 victory over Welshman Elfed Evans in the other semi.

Morgan got off to a good start in the final but later admitted to feeling “a bit twitchy” as he got closer to a fourth title.

Owens hit back before Morgan moved up a gear to take the game away from the 42-year-old.

Meanwhile, in the men’s event, Blackwood’s Andrew Pagett, who plays out of Morgan’s Red Triangle club in Cross Keys, suffered a shock last-32 defeat to Malaysia’s Kok Leong Lim.

Pagett had a flawless record in the round-robin phase and then beat fellow Welshman Matthew Roberts 4-0 in the last 64.

However, Lim, third in his pool, triumphed 5-2 and went on to reach the quarter-finals.