On this week: Werbeniuk passes away
Snooker historian Chris Turner looks back at a week in which former world number eight Bill Werbenuik passed away.
January 17, 1975 – FIRST MASTERS TITLE GOES TO SPENCER
The first ever Benson & Hedges Masters, at the West Centre Hotel in London, was won by John Spencer who beat his great rival, Ray Reardon, 9-8 on a re-spotted black.
January 17, 1979 – ANOTHER TITLE FOR SPENCER
The Holsten Lager International, a one-off tournament at the Fulcrum Centre in Slough featuring sixteen top professionals, was won by John Spencer who beat Graham Miles 11-7 in the final.
January 17, 2005 - DEATH OF JACK FITZMAURICE
Former professional, Jack Fitzmaurice, died at the age of 76. Jack turned pro in 1981 when he was well over 50 and continued playing on the tour until 1997.
January 18, 2009 – FOURTH MASTERS FOPR RONNIE
At Wembley Arena, Ronnie O’Sullivan defeated Mark Selby 9-8 to win the Masters title for the fourth time.
January 20, 1932 – LINDRUM SETS NEW RECORD BILLIARDS BREAK
Water Lindrum compiled a new world record billiards break of 4137 in two hours 55 minutes against Joe Davis at Thurston’s.
January 20, 2003 – FAREWELL TO ‘BIG BILL’
The former world number eight, Bill Werbeniuk (pictured) died at his home in Canada just six days past his 56th birthday.
January 20, 2008 – SELBY’S MASTERS TRIUMPH
At Wembley Arena, Mark Selby won the last eight frames to beat Stephen Lee 10-3 in the final of the SAGA Insurance Masters and clinch his first major title as a professional. Mark was making his debut in the event and became only the fifth player to win it at the first attempt.
January 21, 2000 – FIRST MAXIMUM FOR JOHN HIGGINS
John Higgins compiled his first ever maximum break in competition, against Dennis Taylor in a Scotland v. Northern Ireland Nations Cup match at the Hexagon in Reading.
January 21, 2001 – SCOTLAND TAKE NATIONS CUP TITLE
The third and last Coalite Nations Cup, at the Hexagon in Reading was won by Scotland. Their team of Stephen Hendry, John Higgins and Alan McManus beat Ken Doherty, Fergal O’Brien and Michael Judge of the Republic of Ireland, 6-2 in the final.
January 21, 2007 - RONNIE STORMS TO THIRD MASTERS TITLE
Ding Junhui had no answer to a devastating display by Ronnie O'Sullivan in the final of The SAGA Insurance Masters at its new venue, Wembley Arena. Ronnie was appearing in the final for the fourth year running and helped by four centuries he overwhelmed his young opponent 10-3.
January 22, 1955 – FIRST OFFICIAL MAXIMUM BREAK
Joe Davis compiled the first ever maximum break in to receive official recognition even though it was not in competition. It came in an exhibition match against Willie Smith at Leicester Square Hall.
January 22, 1984 – WATTERSON COMPLETES THREE MAXIMUMS IN 24 HOURS
At the Newbould Club in Chesterfield, Mike Watterson achieved the rare distinction of completing three 147 breaks within a 24-hour period against amateur opponents. He completed his first at 2:30 pm on 21st and the third at 1:40 pm on 22nd.
January 22, 2006 – HIGGINS SNATCHES MASTERS WITH LAST GASP CLEARANCE
Although he had led the final of the SAGA Insurance Masters against Ronnie O’Sullivan for much of the match, John Higgins found himself 8-9 down. He pulled back to level but in the decider, Ronnie opened up with a 60 break before missing a difficult red. John then compiled one of the best clearances ever seen to clinch this, the final Masters at the Wembley Conference Centre before redevelopment.
January 23, 2000 – IT’S ENGLAND’S NATIONS CUP
At the Hexagon in Reading, England won the Nations Cup with a 6-4 victory over the defending champions, Wales, in the final. England’s team consisted of John Parrott, Ronnie O’Sullivan, Jimmy White and Stephen Lee whilst the Welsh were represented by Mark Williams, Matthew Stevens, Darren Morgan and Dominic Dale.
January 23, 2005 – RONNIE RETAINS WELSH OPEN
At the Newport Centre, Defending champion, Ronnie O’Sullivan retained the Welsh Open title with a 9-8 victory over Stephen Hendry in the final.