Mark Allen defeats Kyren Wilson to win his first Masters title

Mark Allen claimed his first Masters title after defeating Kyren Wilson at Alexandra Palace. Alex Pantling/Getty Images

Mark Allen fought off a spirited performance from Kyren Wilson to win his first Masters title with a 10-7 victory at Alexandra Palace.

The world No. 8 was matched for much of Sunday's contest by his fellow first-time finalist before edging away to lift the Paul Hunter trophy and pocket £200,000 in prize money.

It was 40 years since Alex Higgins won his first Masters title and Northern Irishman Allen -- who beat former champions Ronnie O'Sullivan and John Higgins en route to the final -- followed in the footsteps of his countryman following a marathon match lasting five hours and 14 minutes.

Wilson, who had never won a match at the invitational tournament before this year, threatened to complete a remarkable story before falling agonisingly short. The first session ended level at four frames apiece which effectively reduced it to a best of 11 match heading into the evening session.

The keenly-fought contest continued from the restart, with Allen taking almost 40 minutes to secure the ninth frame before Wilson hit back with a finely-crafted break of 84.

A 73 from Allen followed by a sensational 119 -- the first century of the match -- and another 50 finally gave the 31-year-old daylight at 8-5 before going on to take the title.

"Weirdly, I felt calmer as the match went on, I felt more at ease with myself," Allen said after claiming the title. "You're never going to win one of these triple crown events easily and that was the test, it would have been easy to crumble.

"I actually heard today it was 40 years today since Alex [Higgins] first won it, that's always in the back of your mind, not so much when you're playing but when you've actually got over the line those sort of things come back."

Runner-up Wilson, who was in tears after the defeat, said: "I just made things a bit too easy for Mark, you can't do that to a player of Mark's class, he's too good and he'll punish you. That's what he did tonight.

"I'm absolutely devastated. If I was going to lose to anyone, I'm happy it was Mark because he deserves it. He's been fantastic performer, very consistent nowadays, really nice lad and I'm really happy for him."