John Higgins beats Anthony McGill to clinch Indian Open Snooker title
John Higgins defeated compatriot Anthony McGill 5-1 in the final to win the Indian Open Snooker title.other sports Updated: Sep 16, 2017 23:14 IST
In a battle of two baize sport stalwarts, John Higgins of Scotland crushed the challenge of compatriot and defending champion Anthony McGill 5-1 to clinch the Indian Open Snooker title, in Visakhapatnam on Saturday.
It was expected to be the contest of highest standards, what with McGill, the reigning champion taking on World No 3 and four-time world champion Higgins. The pair had met on four previous occasions --- in ranking events --- with McGill holding a slight edge.
But in Visakhapatnam, it was the older statesman who got off to a quick start as Higgins manoeuvred his opponent into uncomfortable positions on the table and capitalised on McGill’s mistakes. The defending champion briefly halted the early momentum by taking the third frame but Higgins dominated the fourth frame and led by three frames to one at the interval.
The mid-match interval did little to break Higgins’ hold on the match as the 42-year-old continued to dominate proceedings not through brute force but with guile and craft. To McGill, this would translate to playing a lot of shots where avoiding a mistake took precedence over the position on the table.
The fifth game is a case in point as McGill played with more aggression towards the beginning but as soon as Higgins got to the table, the same old pattern seen through the match surfaced and McGill was all at sea. The end came soon enough as Higgins rammed home his advantage and dominated the sixth and final frame.