Just before the World Championship begins, we’d like to share some wonderful moments from the Crucible Theatre with you. It wasn’t easy to choose these moments – there have been so many. Here’s the first one : Cliff Thorburn completing the first ever 147 break at the World Snooker Championship.
“The Grinder” first started to play professional snooker in the early 70’s, moving from Canada to the UK in order to improve his game. Thorburn was the first player from outside of the UK to win the World Championship (1980), after beating the great Alex Higgins 18-16 in the final. In 1983 Cliff Thorburn became the first player to make a maximum break at the World Snooker Championship, playing against Terry Griffiths in the second round of the World Championship.
It all started with a fluke on the red ball after Griffiths left an easy shot to the corner. The score was already 2-1 to “The Grinder” and all he wanted was to win the fourth frame. Back then, no one at the Crucible could have imagined a maximum break. Excitement was in the air, rippling through the audience, the commentators and even players from the other table who stopped their match, but not for Cliff. After potting fourteen red balls with thirteen black balls, Thorburn decided to have a short break to wipe his face and dry his sweaty hands. What a guy. Cliff Thorburn potted fifteen red balls with fifteen black balls and continued to the colored balls to complete a remarkable 147 break. Watch this unforgettable moment.
By the way- Cliff won the match 13-12. He kept winning all the way to the final – only to be defeated 6-18 against the young Steve Davis.