Higgins Denies O'Sulliavan in a Thriller
John Higgins had plenty to savour as he was crowned the new SAGA Insurance Masters champion following a memorable last-frame victory over defending title holder Ronnie O'Sullivan.
This season's Grand Prix winner trailed 3-0, but fought back in admirable fashion to beat the world number one 10-9 in an amazing final.
It was seven years ago that Wizard of Wishaw Higgins won his first Masters crown with a 10-8 win over Dubliner Ken Doherty.
Higgins was thumped 10-3 by O'Sullivan in last year's Masters final and also lost to O'Sullivan in the 1995 decider.
But world number six Higgins was determined to produce a polished performance this time around in the last time this tournament will be staged at the Wembley Conference Centre after 27 successful years.
The match swayed from side to side. Higgins winning five frames on the spin having trailed following the loss of the opening three frames.
And, despite O'Sullivan three-times hitting back to level (5-5, 7-7 and 8-8), and having led 9-8, it was Scot Higgins who held his nerve to halt the Rocket's charge for successive titles.
'It's just a crazy game, but it was a classic,' said an emotional Higgins.
'You can be in the depths of despair and then be totally elated. That was a brilliant clearance.
'If you miss the game is over, so I decided to concentrate on every ball. When I got down to the black ball I was just shaking, but thankfully I managed to hold my nerve.
'It couldn't be a better end to the tournament here [at the Wembley Conference Centre]. It's such a fitting finale for everyone, especially the crowd here.
'Ronnie's such a fabulous player. He's amazing, but I'm so glad to have won.'
Beaten finalist O'Sullivan said
Sporting Life - 24/1/2006