Snooker legend Alex Higgins dies

July 25th, 2010 - 8:33 pm ICT by IANS  

Belfast, July 25 (IANS) Two time world snooker champion Alex Higgins died Saturday, losing his 12 year old battle with throat cancer.
He may have been dead for several days before his neighbours found his body by breaking into his home here.

Higgins was famously called The Hurricane because of his sheer speed play and flamboyance around the snooker table.

With his open necked shirts, long hair and cigarette in one hand and a drink in the other hand, the Irish player also changed the way the game of snooker was played at that time.

Tributes to the snooker legend have also started pouring in, since the news of his death broke.

“To people in the game, he was a constant source of argument, he was a rebel. But to the wider public he was a breath of fresh air that drew them into the game. He was an inspiration to my generation,” six-time champion Steve Davis was quoted as saying by The Guardian.

Davis also recollected his days of rivalry with The Hurricane.

“It was a love-hate relationship with. The thrill of playing him was fantastic, but the crowd that came along were not your usual crowd. They were much more noisy and you had to play the crowd as well.”

Another former snooker champion and commentator Dennis Taylor told the BBC: “I don’t think you’ll ever, ever see another player in the game of snooker like the great Alex Higgins. “He was a very, very exciting player to watch. He just was totally unique.”

Higgins claimed the world champion’s crown at his first attempt, aged 22, and took it back again 10 years later from Ray Reardon at the Crucible in Sheffield. He will be best remembered for winning his second world championship in 1982 when, in tears, he invited his wife Lynn and baby daughter Lauren to join him by the baize with the trophy.

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