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Mark Selby Retains World Snooker Championship In Thrilling 18-15 Final Vs. John Higgins

SHEFFIELD, ENGLAND - APRIL 29: Mark Selby of England celebrates winning his semi-final match against Ding Junhui of China on day fifteen of Betfred World Championship 2017 at Crucible Theatre on April 29, 2017 in Sheffield, England. (Photo by Warren Little/Getty Images,)

Mark Selby retained the World Snooker Championship on a dramatic 48 hours at the Crucible, eventually defeating John Higgins in a thrilling final on Monday night.

The defending champion and world number one was 10-4 down to John Higgins at one point on Sunday, but began his comeback by taking the final three frames to carry the final over to Monday with gathering momentum.

The 33-year-old then dominated the early round on Monday afternoon, winning six of the seven frames played to take a 13-11 lead into the final stretch, and looking for all the world like that same momentum would simply blow his opponent away.

SHEFFIELD, ENGLAND - MAY 01: Mark Selby of England shankes hands with John Higgins of Scotland ahead of the final of the World Snooker Championship on day seventeen at Crucible Theatre on May 1, 2017 in Sheffield, England. (Photo by Warren Little/Getty Images,)

Four-time champion Higgins stopped the rot by pulling it back to 14-12 early after the restart, and although Selby threatened to end it there and then by winning the next two, Higgins’ doggedness pulled it back to 16-14 to set up a thrilling finale.

The tie was not without controversy, however, as referee  Jan Verhaas called a foul as Selby attempted to play a snooker behind the black but just coming up short. After consulting with scoring ref Brendan Moore and BBC analysts John Parrott and Steve Davis, Verhaas stuck to his guns and kept his original decision.

Though the gap was narrowed to one frame, that proved to be as much as Higgins had in the tank as Selby won the final two frames to claim the trophy for 2017.

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Author: The PA Team

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