April 9, 2010

Hurricane Hits Sheffield – Alex Returns.

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 5:30 am

Snooker legend Alex ‘Hurricane’ Higgins locked horns with one of his oldest adversaries Cliff ‘The Grinder’ Thorburn last night at the Crucible — just days after that well known bastion for truth the ‘Daily Star’ claimed he was ‘fighting for life’.

The Hurricane lost the match 2-0 in front of almost 1,000 fans — but, for Higgins, even making it to the table was considered a victory.

The old warriors were taking part in the Snooker Legends tournament at the scene of their Embassy World Championship triumphs.

Hard-living Belfast man Higgins (61) signed himself out of hospital to play in the event, and last night was the first time he has been at the hallowed home of snooker since losing to Ken Doherty 16 years ago.

Last week, it emerged that two-times World Champion was practising for up to eight hours a day for the nostalgic series.

His agent Kevin Kelly said the match with Canadian Thorburn was emotional for Alex.

“It brought back memories of their 1980 showdown in the World Championships here,” he said while counting the takings.

“That was the best live game I have seen in a very long time. The atmosphere was simply amazing” he smiled as he realised he’d made more than he expected.

He added: “Alex was so eager to play he signed himself out of hospital. He is in good spirits and is absolutely fine. He told me he’s a fighter, a cat with nine lives. Fans came from all over the world just to watch these two legends play”.

“A Canadian spectator who flew himself and his wife over to watch Alex and Cliff play won the chance to play against them — it is a dream come true for him”.

“The atmosphere was better than any championship that I have ever been to”. he said without a hint of bias “The spectators were really getting into it”.

“These two are renowned foes but they shook hands yesterday and got on great and they will be enjoying a pint of Guinness together later”. I hope Cliff brought his credit card along.

“I can’t really put into words how great the crowd were. It was a wonderful night for snooker.”

I think Barry Hearn may have found his soul mate in our Kev, truly a man prone to grand statements. But great to see that Alex is still going strong.

For your chance to win a Higgins ‘Pop Art’ T-Shirt, just enter the Caption Competition on the right hand menu.

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