Robertson survives nightmare start to win English Open

Neil Robertson defeats John Higgins in a final-frame thriller to win the English Open title in Milton Keynes; the Australian delivered a brilliant 120 clearance to force the decider and ultimately seal a stunning 9-8 victory

Last Updated: 09/11/21 9:24am

Neil Robertson survived a nightmare start to the final session to hand John Higgins more final-frame agony in the final of the English Open

Neil Robertson survived a nightmare start to the final session to hand John
Higgins more final-frame agony and win the English Open title in Milton Keynes.

For the second final in succession, Higgins lost the last three frames after suffering an identical 9-8 loss in last month’s Northern Ireland Open final against Mark Allen.

Higgins had the first chance in the decider but beached on 22 when he over-cut a red, and Robertson shrugged off his earlier inconsistency to win the match with a break of 65.

At 7-5 down at the interval. Alexander comes up to me “Hey Dad I believe in you you’ve got this. Just remember when I watched you come from 8-4 down to win the Scottish”???? Sport doesn’t always work out the way we want, but moments like this you remember for ever???? pic.twitter.com/5ZM9mME2ct

— Neil Robertson (@nr147)

November 8, 2021

Robertson, who lost last year’s final in a deciding frame to Judd Trump, said: “I found something from somewhere, and I played my best snooker towards the end of the match.”

Higgins had seized command of the final by winning the first four frames of the evening session and converting a 5-3 deficit into a 7-5 lead.

The Australian fired two centuries, including a 140 in the fifth frame, as he looked on course to land his 21st career ranking title.

But Higgins, who won the last three frames of his semi-final to sink Ronnie O’Sullivan, was far from finished and he got the better of four attritional opening frames of the evening session to take control.

Can’t help but feel so proud of our sport when I hear players speak how both John Higgins and @nr147 did tonight, pure class, thank you ?? ??

— jason ferguson (@jasonferguson5)

November 8, 2021

The mid-session interval could not have come at a better time for the Australian, who looked entirely out of sorts, and he duly returned to stop the rot, capitalising on a Higgins in-off to reduce the deficit to 6-7.

A 55 helped Higgins move one frame from victory but Robinson clawed back with a half-century of his own, then delivered a brilliant 120 clearance to force the decider and ultimately seal victory.

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