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banner Thursday, 1 February, 2001, 12:53 GMT
John Higgins
John Higgins
John Higgins: Celebrated marriage at the end of 2000
Date of birth: 18/05/75
World ranking: 2 (Provisional 2000-01: 3)
Career earnings: 2,498,842
Total ranking points: 33,799

With the surname Higgins, he was almost destined for a career in snooker.

And just like the legendary Alex 'Hurricane' Higgins, his namesake John has captured the Embassy world title.

But there the similarities end - John's mild-mannered Scottish composure contrasting sharply with the Irishman's wild flamboyance.

Lanarkshire's John Higgins never looked back after turning professional in 1992 and last year ended with a win at the Liverpool Victoria UK Championship and marriage.

The 25-year-old has won a total of 13 ranking events including the 1998 World Championship which saw him elevated to number one in the world.

Higgins also managed to rattle in a record 14 century breaks on his way to lifting the Crucible crown.

Higgins is called "The Kid" on the snooker circuit - a nickname which has derived from his boyish looks.

He was deeply disappointed last season when Mark Williams snatched his world number one crown.

Higgins, who is an ardent Celtic supporter, was forced to pull out of the British Grand Prix 2000 at the quarter-final stage so he could be best man at his brother Jason's wedding.

The year ended with his own marriage, to childhood sweetheart Denise, shortly before Christmas.

And 2001 began on a high as Higgins teamed up with Stephen Hendry and Alan McManus to take the Coalite Nations Cup for Scotland.

Higgins could not, however, retain his Regal Welsh Open crown, crashing out in the quarter-finals to Stephen Lee.

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