John Higgins is into an eighth World Championship final (Picture: VCG via Getty Images)John Higgins scraped his way into an eighth Snooker World Championship final, where he will face an almighty task of beating Judd Trump over 35 frames.
The four-time world champion edged out David Gilbert 17-16 in a deciding frame on Saturday afternoon to set-up a repeat of the 2011 world final against Trump.
Higgins won that previous encounter with the Englishman and Ronnie O’Sullivan believes he has a chance of doing so again after his battling semi-final performance.
The bookmakers have installed Trump as the heavy favourite to win his first world title, but after the gutsy victory over Gilbert, O’Sullivan will not rule out Higgins.
‘It was an unbelievable match, the standard was so high and John had to play that well to win it,’ O’Sullivan told Eurosport.
‘The guy is unbelievable, for the first two sessions he was like, limping around the table and he managed to stay in the match some how.
‘He played a little bit better in the final four frames on Friday night which gave him a bit of hope.
‘Tonight [Saturday] he come out and his demeanour was a lot better, it still wasn’t the best of John Higgins, but it was good enough to win a semi-final and good enough to give him a chance of winning the final.’
After the victory Higgins credited the influence of his family as he had his wife and children in attendance for the win over Gilbert.
O’Sullivan agrees that having his loved ones around clearly made a difference, and may have even been the reason he got over the line and into the final.
I think he needed that,’ continued the Rocket. ‘If it wasn’t for looking up and seeing his kids and his family that love him and support him, I don’t think he’d have got through.
‘His family have pulled him through that and they’ll try and pull him through the final as well.’
The final begins on Sunday afternoon and is played over four sessions, concluding on Monday night.
MORE: Snooker World Championship final preview: Dawn of a new era or one last stand for the old guard?
MORE: Judd Trump explains why ‘everything leads to a John Higgins win’ in Snooker World Championship final