Ali Carter has won the 2014 General Cup after overcoming Shaun Murphy in a thrilling final 7-6 in Hong Kong.
It completes a remarkable comeback for the ‘Captain’, who was diagnosed with lung cancer in May and has been fighting the illness in the subsequent months.
Carter was initially supposed to return in the Bulgarian Open a couple of weeks ago, a tournament Murphy actually went on to emerge victorious in, but setbacks in his health resulted in a further delay.
Thankfully, the 35 year-old was fit enough to make the trip to the Far East for this annual invitational event, which started in 2004 and has been a permanent fixture on the calendar since 2009.
Making his return was expected to be more than enough and I don’t think many, including probably himself, thought that he could come away with the title this week.
However, wins over Marco Fu and Liang Wenbo in the round-robin phase earned Carter a semi-final berth before he knocked out defending champion Mark Davis with a 6-2 triumph that included a 139 century break.
In the final, Carter consistently found himself behind and had to reverse 5-3 and 6-5 deficits to force the deciding frame, which he duly took to walk away as champion.
It’s a credit to his character that he has been able to come back twice from cancer scares in the last couple of years, all the while continuing to battle his long-term Crohn’s Disease.
An inspirational story.