World Championship 2011 - The Final - Higgins takes trophy back to Scotland

17:12:00 Ramona Dragomir 0 Comments

John Higgins, the 2011 World Champion
One must always love, admire and cherish a legend, that’s what I think. Along with Joe Davis, who won no more than 15 world championship titles, along with Steve Davis our beloved "Nugget" who thrilled us all back in the `80 as has won six world titles, along with Stephen Hendry that dominated modern snooker and conquered seven glorious world titles, along with Rocket Ronnie O`Sullivan who has revolutionized snooker and brought him in an era of speed, along with all these great names, comes the name of John Higgins.

No, we cannot and underestimate his strength of character or his ambition. No, we cannot overlook his accomplishments in the sport, his special touch that makes snooker a more powerful sport. No, we cannot say he is not one of the greatest players that has ever lived and walk on this Earth, for what he did during this last season proves us that he deserves to be called a genuine snooker player and a great man of character.

The final of the 2011 World Championship was an experience that I shall never forget. It was filled with drama, with emotions, with twisted situations, with nerve, with courage, with love and excitement. The way the audience reacted as the last session was starting represents how much does snooker mean for the people. The way they feel snooker is something that words can’t express.

Last night, after a genuine battle of cues, John Higgins conquered his forth world title, after beating one of the most powerful and talented players on tour Judd Trump 18-15. It was one of the most delightful finals that I have ever witnessed and the perfect way to end the snooker season.

Judd Trump, the 2011 World Championship runner-up
The last session started with Higgins in control of the match, as he was leading Trump 13-12, and a strategic break of 62 was taking the Scotsman one step further as he won the first frame. However, young Trump succeeded in pulling back two consecutive frames as to prove he is still there fighting and willing to win the tournament.
It was dramatic, I though we shall go all the way through the last frame, but I was proven to be wrong, as Higgins took the frame before the interval to put his nose back in front. After the 15 minute break the time was set for another frame winning opportunity for Higgins, as Trump missed the last brown and gave his rival the chance to make the scoreline go 16-14 in his favor.

As Higgins missed a long red on 46, Trump felt this was the perfect opportunity to win himself a frame, and so he did. A break of 70 was putting the Bristol boy just one point behind the more experienced player from Scotland. But that was going to be his last frame.
With a break of 50 Higgins was making his way through the victory, leaving Trump in need of a snooker, snooker that the youngster didn’t get and so the scoreline ended up on 17-15.

The following frame, but also the last one, was pure drama. Trump had a pretty good start, but lost position on 11, got another chance but unexpectedly missed the pink on 36 and so Higgins had the chance to come to the table. However he was not to win the tournament from one single visit, as the pressure and tension made him miss a tricky brown as he was reaching 29.

Higgins v. Trump, one fo the best final ever
Now, he needed two snookers to get the job done, but John decided it is for the best to risk a bit. Probably inspired by Trump’s courage, Higgins potted the colors all the way to the blue (included) and tried to get a snooker on the pink. And he did! Trump missed the pink, giving Higgins six points and surprisingly John let him play the next shot from where the cue ball was left.
That was the moment when Higgins came to the table, prepared for the shot and played one of the most spectacular doubles that I’ve ever seen. He potted the pink in the left centre pocket and landed on the most perfect position for potting the black. With the black out of the way, he was now champion for the forth time!!!

The following moments where filled with mixed emotions as Higgins remembered his late father in the interview that Hazel Irvine took from him right after he potted the last ball and the poor man burst into tears. His wife and children came to take him in their arms and surround him with their love. A family man, we can’t argue with that!
We all know that Higgins had the most horrible last year, with the NOTW sting and his father passing away, and we also know that he wanted to win this title in order to dedicate the victory to his dad, to the person that inspired him the most.
A great talent, a wonderful player and admirable person! Congratulations to John Higgins!

Higgins punching the air as he pots the last ball
I can’t overlook Judd Trump’s performance, though. He’s played more than wonderful and proved he is a genuine future star for this sport. To see him perform those long pots, to see him taking on those crazy plants, to see him that he just adores to be there playing...that’s something that will make this young man a terrific snooker star in the following years. He has a bit of Jimmy White and Alex Higgins` inside him.

The World Championship also ends the snooker season and what a season this was! Started with a big dark cloud about it but constantly improved and "washed" by Barry Hearn’s revolutionary mind, snooker ended his season in the best possible way: by showing the no matter what life brings, the most important thing is put yourself together and continue to fight for your dream.

From the Crucible, with love

Snooker Loopy