PTC5 FINAL - 2011
World Snooker Academy, Sheffield
PTC5 RESULTS - SEASON PTC RESULTS - OFFICIAL SITE
Andrew Higginson's previous career highlight was reaching the final of the Welsh Open in 2007 making a 147 on route but today he has achieved a career first by winning the title in Sheffield. He takes home the trophy and the £10,000 first prize for his efforts.
Decent pots on the blue and pink saw Higginson win a scrappy first frame and he started the next well, making a break of 63 only for Higgins to take it with a 73 clearance to tie at 1-1. Higginson then was quick to win the 3rd with a top run of 78 and then took the next for a commanding 3-1 lead in this best of 7 final. Higgins who hasn't won a title since his 4th world championship crown in May compiled a break of 55 in frame 5 and had a chance to win it but missed a crucial black near the end and Higginson seized his chance with a break of 28 to win frame, match and tournament.
"I'm thrilled to bits," said Higginson. "Even though it's not one of the big ranking tournaments, there were 200 players in it including all the big names, so to be the last man standing is a great achievement. Especially to beat John, the World Champion and best all round player in the game, in the final. He wasn't at his best but I'll still take it.
"I was practising the day before coming to Sheffield and hitting the ball better than I have done for years. Over the two days here I've made so many good breaks, not centuries but 60s and 70s which are enough to win frames."
"Getting into the top 16 is one of my main goals," added Higginson. "There are six or seven other players fighting for it and I had to win this to give myself a chance. I'm in the mix now and we'll see how it goes next week. But if I don't make it this time then at least I'm getting close to it."
It is great to see another long-time pro such as Andrew Higginson coming through to win this title like Barry Pinches and Marcus Campbell did last year. It just shows that in a best of 7 any one can be beaten, even the world champion in a final and Andrew certainly didn't seem to wilt at any point during the battle. It is too late for him to get in to the top 16 for the next cut off after PTC6 this week, but if he keeps playing like this he will stand a good chance before the next one.
Also it is heartening to see John Higgins playing well again. Even though he wasn't at his best he is far too good to have not made an impression in this first part of the season and if he keeps his momentum going it will take a lot to beat him at the longer format matches at the UK, Masters and the World Championship.
Once again well done to the Widnes Warrior Andrew Higginson and all the best for the upcoming season!
Quotes and photo courtesy - World Snooker