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Last Updated: Tuesday, 15 April, 2003, 15:53 GMT 16:53 UK
Bad Boys: Kirk Stevens

What can you say about a man who wore an all-white suit with matching shoes.

Stylish? Open to debate. Colourful and a tricky opponent? Without a doubt.

Stevens was part of a Canadian potting triumvirate that included Cliff Thorburn and Bill Werbeniuk.

He was a young, good looking man with a North American accent and a mane of hair rivalling the great Kevin Keegan perm of that era.

In 1980, Stevens became the youngest player to reach the semi-finals of the Embassy World Championship where he lost 13-16 to Alex 'Hurricane' Higgins.

He subsequently rose to fourth in the world rankings after a number of appearances in quarter and semi-finals.

But with snooker arguably at the height of its popularity, Stevens' career took a downward slide.

Following the final of the 1985 British Open, which he lost 12-9 to Silvino Francisco, the South African champion accused him of taking stimulants, or in his own words, being "high as a kite".

The star admitted that he had a cocaine problem and returned to Canada for treatment.

His career went into freefall and he soon dropped out of the top 50 and lost his place on the tour.

Stevens won back his spot for one season but failed to hang on to it for the following year.

KEY BAD MOMENTS
1985: Accused of taking drugs
1985: Returns to Canada for treatment
1991: Became a car salesman

During the 1990s, the Canadian realised he had to make money by other means.

He tried construction work, landscape gardening and selling cars.

But he found that being a car salesman was not his forte - primarily because he was not very good at it.

Stevens went back to playing snooker, albeit on the Canadian circuit, where he has been national champion on three out of five occasions.

Bad Boy rating: 7/10


Part Three: How the late 'Big Bill' Werbeniuk relied on drink to steady his nerves.




SEE ALSO
Bad Boys: Alex 'Hurricane' Higgins
11 Apr 03  |  Snooker
Bad Boys: 'Big' Bill Werbeniuk
18 Apr 03  |  Snooker
Bad Boys: Quinten Hann
24 Apr 03  |  Snooker
Bad Boys: Ronnie O'Sullivan
02 May 03  |  Snooker

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