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Last Updated: Friday, 18 April, 2003, 11:07 GMT 12:07 UK
1978: Reardon makes it six
Reardon saw off veteran Davis
The Championship was notable for being the first which BBC Television covered from first ball to last.

The audience response was so positive - five million viewers for a midnight highlights programme, rising to seven million as the tournament approached a climax - that the schedules were cleared for live coverage of the final.

The viewers were immediately enthralled. Ray Reardon trailed Doug Mountjoy 7-2 in the first round but beat him 13-9 and comfortably despatched the gargantuan Canadian Bill Werbeniuk 13-6 to reach the last four.

Alex Higgins, an instant favourite with a new legion of television viewers who had previously not seen much of him, was beaten 13-12 by Patsy Fagan who won the last three frames on a re-spotted black, black and pink respectively.

Willie Thorne missed a black for the match when leading Eddie Charlton 12-9 and was beaten 13-12.

Charlton then came from 12-8 down to edge Cliff Thorburn 13-12 in the quarter-finals but was beaten 18-14 by Reardon in the semis.

The other semi-final paired the South African left-hander Perrie Mans with 64-year-old Fred Davis, the younger brother of Joe.

Davis put up a great fight, recovering from 16-12 adrift to 16-15, but he missed the pink for 16-16 and was beaten 18-16.

From 10-10 in the final, Reardon pulled away to a 25-18 win, his sixth world championship title in eight years.

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