£2,000 for an apology from Snooker's 'People's Champion' Alex Higgins

Know as the 'Hurricane', Higgins more than lived up to his nickname both on and off the table. Although regarded by many as the most naturally gifted player to grace the green baize, the former World Champion was plagued by controversy throughout his career and later life.

The letter followed perhaps his most notorious incident at the Crucible in 1990 when, after crashing out of the World Championship to Steve James, he punched match official Colin Randle in the stomach in front of the world's media.

The pair then tussled before they were eventually pulled apart, and Randle later claimed Higgins had an existing grudge against him.

It is expected to sell for up to £2,000 when it is sold later this month by Hanson's Auctioneers at the Mackworth Hotel in Derby.

The letter of apology, handwritten by Higgins

The incident, which led to a year-long ban from the game for Higgins and a drop to 120th in the World rankings, is thought to have been to start of his sad decline in snooker.

He died earlier this year after a lengthy fight against throat cancer, and Randle has stated he will be donating some of the proceeds of the sale to Cancer Research.

The letter was written just minutes before he appeared in front of a disciplinary panel, and features the claim he was "very upset at the time in respect of personal and financial matters". It is a small insight into the life of a troubled genius, and one that is sure to prove popular with fans of the game.

Snooker memorabilia is certainly a growing market for collectors, and pieces such as this letter are likely to prove a canny investment. Higgins will forever be remembered by many as 'The People's Champion' and as the years go by many more people will be looking to invest in his legend.


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