Who was the first overseas player to win the World Snooker Championship?

Who was the first overseas player to win the World Snooker Championship? After the World Snooker Championship moved to its ‘spiritual home’ at the Crucible Theatre, Sheffield in 1977, the first overseas player to win was Canadian Cliff ‘The Grinder’ Thorburn who, in 1980, defeated the late Alex ‘Hurricane’ Higgins 18-16 in the best-of-35-frame final.

However, strictly speaking, much earlier in the history of the World Snooker Championship, in the days when it was still contested at various venues around Britain, and elsewhere, the first overseas player to win was Australian Horace Lindrum, in 1952. Be that as it may, the World Snooker Championship that year was an oddity insofar that a financial dispute between the Billiards Association and Control Council (BACC) and Professional Billiards Players’ Association (PBPA) led to a player boycott and left only two entrants.

Lindrum, who had previously finished runner-up to Joe Davis in the World Snooker Championship three times, in 1936, 1937 and 1946, faced reigning Professional Billiards Champion, New Zealander Clark McConachy, in a marathon, albeit one-sided, ‘final’ at Houldsworth Hall, Manchester. The best-of-145-frame match was contested over a total of 13 days between February 25 and March 8, 1952, but was effectively over after ten, when Lindrum took a winning 73-37 lead. Nevertheless, the pair earnestly played out all bar two of the remaining 35 ‘dead’ frames, to make the final score 94-49 in favour of Lindrum.

What’s the highest break ever recorded in professional snooker?

What's the highest break ever recorded in professional snooker? Of course, the ‘maximum’ break in snooker is generally considered to be 147, comprising 15 reds, 15 blacks and all six colours. According to the World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association (WPBSA), the first officially ratified 147 break in professional tournament play was compiled by Steve Davis, in a quarter-final match against John Spencer, at the Lada Classic at the Civic Centre, Oldham in 1982. While still not exactly ‘ten-a-penny’, 147 breaks occur much more frequently in modern professional competition than was once the case; Ronnie O’Sullivan, for example, has 15 to his name.

However, under extraordinary circumstances – that is, if one player commits a foul stroke and, in so doing, leaves his or her opponent a ‘free ball’ with all 15 reds remaining – it is possible for a player to pot 16 ‘reds’, 16 blacks and all six colours, such that a break of 155 is theoretically possible. Indeed, retired English professional Jamie Cope recorded a 155 break, albeit in a witnessed practice match, in 2006. So far, the only ’16-red’ clearance over 147 recorded in professional competition was a break of 148 compiled by Scotsman Jamie Burnett, against Leo Fernandez, in the second qualifying round of the UK Championship at Pontin’s, Prestatyn. Burnett potted 16 ‘reds’, 12 blacks, two pinks, one blue and one brown and, obviously, all six colours to reach his record total.

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