Alex Higgins was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland, on March 18th 1949 as Alexander Gordon Higgins. Alex played professional snooker for nearly 30 years, winning the World Championship twice and the Irish Professional Championship five times.
Alex started playing snooker at the age of 11, and by 19 had won the amateur champtionship titles for All-Ireland and Northern Ireland. Alex turned pro in 1972, at the age of 22, and won the World Championship in the same year - the youngest player to do so at the time. He went on to win a further 21 professional titles, including a second World Championship win 1982 and Irish Professional Championship wins in 1972, 1978, 1979, 1983 and 1989.
Alex has played in 19 World Championships; as well as his wins in 1972 an 1982 he reached the finals in 1976 and 1980 and was a semi-finalist a further seven times.
He earned his nickname ‘Hurricane’ thanks to his speed at the table, and his controversial and flamboyant behaviour on and off the table has also earned him a reputation as a passionate and dedicated player and one of snooker’s true characters. In 1998 Alex had an operation for throat cancer - a legacy of the drinking and smoking culture prevalent in professional snooker throughout the 1970s and 1980s.