What has been largely ignored in the shadow of the red or pink controversy is that by winning the Shanghai Masters, Mark Selby has become only the ninth player to be the official world no.1 since the rankings were introduced in 1976.
It is a formidable list to join: Ray Reardon, Cliff Thorburn, Steve Davis, Stephen Hendry, John Higgins, Mark Williams, Ronnie O’Sullivan and Neil Robertson.
Selby will play his first match as the newly installed top dog against Stuart Bingham at the Brazilian Masters in Florianopolis today.
He was one of many young players who benefited from the dedication of Malcolm Thorne, the snooker club proprietor and organiser of junior tournaments for more than two decades, who very sadly died earlier this year.
It was in these weekend events that Selby tested his game against the country’s best juniors, including his good friend Shaun Murphy.
He has had his fair share of off table problems to be dealt with. He lost his father when still a teenager. Selby also got mixed up with a manager who later served him with a writ before a match at the Welsh Open.
Snooker players, particularly those who have a little success when young, tend to be a trusting bunch, often far too trusting.
Having turned professional in 1999, Selby’s first real breakthrough came in Shanghai in 2002 when he reached the semi-finals of the China Open.
He beat a 14 year-old Ding Junhui in the wildcard round and then Stephen Hendry and Ronnie O’Sullivan to reach the last four before losing to Anthony Hamilton.
Just 18, he was not worldly wise. This was the tournament where he tried to arrange transport for an afternoon match despite it being the early hours of the morning.
But it was also the tournament where I first saw the genuinely nice side of Selby. In Shanghai, there was a Cue Zone where the Chinese played on snooker and pool tables.
Selby went up there in his own time to play frames against the punters, something that would have meant a lot to them.
He has remained this way: likeable, reliable and professional, even though he often struggles in interviews to be as relaxed as he is behind the scenes.
The ‘Jester’ image is completely contrived and based, basically, on a rhyme but he is a young man who clearly enjoys life as a snooker professional, which is presumably why he plays in so many events.
Selby reached his first ranking final in 2003, losing a long, low quality Scottish Open dogfight with David Gray 9-7.
His form disappeared soon afterwards but returned by 2006 when he shocked Higgins in the first round of the World Championship.
A year later he recovered from 12-4 down against Higgins to only 12-10 heading into the last session of their world final before losing 18-13.
In 2008, Selby became the first player since Stephen Hendry in 1989 to win the Masters at his first attempt, winning three matches 6-5 to reach the final.
Several times since I have described him as a master of brinkmanship, winning close matches under pressure.
He did so at the 2008 Welsh Open, coming from three down with four to play to beat Ronnie O’Sullivan and repeating the same feat against O’Sullivan at the 2010 Masters.
Selby has, of course, lost many close matches too. Indeed, it may be because so many of his matches go close that he hasn’t won as many titles as he’d like.
I’ve read some appalling things about Selby from people who have never met him. It is fair enough not to like a player’s individual playing style but this should not reflect on them personally.
You won’t meet many better people in snooker than Terry Griffiths and he played – with all due respect to Griff – a somewhat methodical game.
Selby’s main problem seems to be he does everything right: he is dedicated, he is professional, he tries to treat people properly. And on the table he tries to win, which is the point of playing professional sport.
These should be attributes to be applauded, not derided.
Maybe it wouldn’t be such a problem to people if he wasn’t so good. Last season he made 54 centuries, a record. At the Crucible he made six against Hendry, a record for the World Championship.
Who gets to decide how snooker should be played anyway? There are long established rules of the game. As long as a player keeps within them then it is their choice how to approach each frame, each shot.
Selby said last season that he thought he had become too negative in the latter stages of tournaments.
He has an excellent tactical game but the balance needs to be struck between attack and defence in the way John Higgins has accomplished to such great effect.
Selby has now won two ranking titles. His consistency over the last two years has been rewarded by his no.1 ranking.
A warning, though: when you are world no.1, the only way is down. The work shouldn’t stop. If anything it should increase.
And in Selby's case I suspect it will.