Thursday, 24 July 2014

Missing "The Hurricane"

It was four years ago that I read the most dreadful tweet of my life: "Higgins found dead in his flat". I remember that I was just getting accustomed with the world of snooker, but I knew about Alex and his legacy.

In just a few minutes my Twitter page was flooded by messages from people who were absolutely stunned about what had just happened, many of them being unable to write anything but "I can’t believe the Hurricane left us".

Indeed, it was 24th of July 2010, when Alex "The Hurricane" Higgins decided to leave this world for a better place. I remember that the papers stated he was deceased for several days before the police found his body. A genuine war of accusations followed next, someone had to carry the guilt. Like that was going to bring the poor man back.

His beloved friend, Jimmy White was amongst the ones who was present at his funeral and shared a tear, while the people of Belfast gathered to give "The Hurricane" one last cheer and one more round of applause as the funeral procession passed by.

His beautiful daughter recited a really emotional poetry and then the silence settled in.

Many snooker players shared their thoughts about Alex, Ronnie O'Sullivan being one of them, as well as Denny Taylor (with whom Alex had a very eventful history), Steve Davis, John Virgo (who actually wrote a book - a pretty decent one too), Ken Doherty and the list can go on.

Now, four years after his departure, people, snooker fans, fellow countrymen, still remember Alex Higgins as being the "People's champion", a tormented soul, a colourful character, a hell of a snooker player with a heart of gold and the manners of a butcher ... sometimes.

1982 - Champion of the World
His involvement with snooker is not something that can be captured into an article, nor can it be shared through a book. One must witness his matches to understand the electricity of this player, the constant spell he was under each time he was playing on the green baize. 

Not to mention the amount of people (now prestigious snooker players) that were influenced and inspired by Higgins's way of playing snooker. Even today, the lads have him as a snooker player model and many try to use those twisted shots he was performing in his heyday.

I'm not much for religion and what they teach you at school about God, but I remember my high school teacher who once said: "People's action speak for them even after their death." 

And in Alex's case, the fact that even today people still consider him a legend and one of the milestones that made snooker into what it is today ... well, that's something isn't it?

Miss you Hurricane!

Monday, 21 July 2014

4 years of Snooker, my love

It was on a Wednesday night, four years ago that I started this blog. I remember knowing barely anything about snooker, but having this ever-growing feeling of making my thoughts about snooker known to the world. My thoughts, about how snooker has changed my life completely and has made me regain confidence in writing.

A lot has happened throughout these four years, the blog changing, as my English skills (that I dare say have improve slightly), but one thing has stayed the same: my passion for snooker, for the horrible kicks that the players have during important shots, for the nail-biting moments that remain in the history book, for the not-so-pleasant times when a player does something wrong, for the moments when they win, for the moments when they lose etc.

Some of you know that I am a woman, which I guess explains why my articles tend to be long and my perception over matches carries too much emotions sometimes. I know that my softness for the game makes the blog a bit girly and that's not everyone's cup of tea, but for those of you who like coffee, I dare you stick around for you might just like it here.

During these four years I have managed to make this blog a second home and place of refugee, when things are rough in the real world and although, I get carried away with my day-job and I don't write as much as I'd like, that doesn't mean I will ever give up this place (tough luck for those who think otherwise!)

This place has become my rock, the place I turn to and you my dear readers are the ones "to blame" for that. It goes without saying that without your comments, constant support and sometimes cold showers this place wouldn't be running today. So ... thank you! Thank you for every second you decided to spend on the blog, reading or criticizing my writing. 

And since today is a day of celebration (yes, am I well aware of the fact that I started a sentence with "and"!) I thought it would be nice to begin it with a brand new logo. I'm no graphic designer, but I do know how to use a crayon (even more then one in this case), so here's the new logo: colourful, crazy, but simple and of course girly! Sue me!

That being said, I would like to raise a glass (of course that I have no glass at this particular moment, but I plan of having a couple in a few hours time) to the best four years of my life! Thank you for making it possible, for being by my side, for the support and above all, for sharing your love for snooker with me.

Here's to the 40th anniversary! (I'd be 66 years old by then and a bit senile, but at least we'll have a blast of talking about how snooker is being played in space - Barry Hearn you better not steal my idea!)

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