World Seniors Snooker Champion
Finals, World Seniors Tour

David Lilley Becomes World Seniors Snooker Champion

Victory came on his debut in the competition.

David Lilley ended Jimmy White’s reign at the Crucible Theatre, beating the Whirlwind 5-3 to become the world seniors snooker champion on Sunday in Sheffield.

The 45 year-old prevailed in a tight affair to stop White’s hopes of a threepeat following his recent World Seniors Championship successes in 2019 and 2020.

The latter had been on an eleven-match winning streak at the Crucible Theatre, but he was always chasing his opponent after a slow start in this year’s final.

Lilley, who beat Ken Doherty in the quarter-finals and Patrick Wallace in the last four, didn’t show many nerves at the beginning of the contest and won the first three frames with a top break of 74.

White responded with contributions of 85, 63, and 56 to evoke memories of last year’s victory over Doherty when he fought back from 4-0 behind to prevail in a decider.

At 3-3, the 59 year-old probably became the favourite but a missed opportunity in the seventh frame allowed Lilley in for a reprieve, which he took with open arms to retake the lead.

Lilley, who represented one of the players who qualified for the tournament back in January, then stopped any hopes of a final frame with a title-winning break of 69 to become the 2021 world seniors snooker champion.

The Englishman’s biggest victory of his career comes with a champion’s cheque worth £15,000 and a potentially lucrative invitation into the Champion of Champions next season on the Main Tour.

“I’m a bit speechless, I didn’t think I’d get this emotional. Jimmy is my hero – he’s everyone’s hero. I really don’t know what to say – I’m just so happy,” Lilley said after defeating the former UK and Masters champion.

Unfortunately, there was no crowd in to enjoy the action over the course of the four-day event, but the World Seniors Championship was broadcast on BBC’s digital platforms and the Red Button in addition to the Matchroom.Live streaming service.

Featured photo credit: WSS


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