The pair get pleasure from a protracted historical past of going through one another with silverware on the road.
Ronnie O’Sullivan and John Higgins will add to their listing of encounters in finals after they compete for Gamers Championship glory on Sunday on the Marshall Area.
There can be a champion’s cheque price £125,000 on the road as they encounter one another for a record-extending 71st time in all competitions since turning skilled on the identical time in 1992.
A staggering 17 of these have been title-deciding contests, underlining their longevity as two of the sport’s all-time greats.
Let’s take a short look again at all the earlier finals between O’Sullivan and Higgins since their first 26 years in the past.
1995 Masters: O’Sullivan 9-3 Higgins
Their fourth assembly total however a primary in a ultimate, the duo shocked their fellow top-16 members to achieve the final two of the Masters whereas each aged simply 19.
O’Sullivan duly turned the youngest winner of the distinguished invitational with a 9-3 drubbing of Higgins, in what would transpire to be the primary of three Masters finals towards each other.
1995 British Open: Higgins 9-6 O’Sullivan
Higgins bounced again strongly to win the Worldwide Open at Steve Davis’ expense the week after that 12 months’s Masters, and fewer than two months later he gained his fast revenge on the Rocket with a 9-6 victory within the ultimate of the British Open.
Their tug-of-war rivalry on the enterprise finish of among the greatest occasions on the calendar had effectively and actually begun.
1996 Charity Problem: O’Sullivan 9-6 Higgins
A singular invitational by which the gamers competed for his or her respective charities, it was O’Sullivan who picked up the £30,000 cheque on this event.
It was a victory that stood because the Englishman’s solely one in every of what transpired to be a disappointing 1995/96 marketing campaign normally.
1998 Scottish Open: O’Sullivan 9-5 Higgins
Higgins was within the midst of a outstanding run of kind that might see him attain six out of the eight rating occasion finals of the 1997/98 snooker season.
The Wizard of Wishaw ended the time period because the world champion and the world primary, however O’Sullivan had the final snicker on the Scotsman’s dwelling turf.
1998 Charity Problem: Higgins 9-8 O’Sullivan
Nonetheless, a mere week after that loss Higgins received one again on his rival, and certainly made up for his earlier reverse within the Charity Problem from two years earlier.
Higgins withstood a late comeback from his opponent to prevail in a deciding body – their first ultimate to final the gap.
1998 Scottish Masters: O’Sullivan 9-7 Higgins
Round this era it appeared as if they might solely cross paths in finals of the Charity Problem or in Scotland.
Higgins was once more denied on his personal territory – this time in Motherwell – as O’Sullivan took the invitational spoils.
1999 Charity Problem: Higgins 9-4 O’Sullivan
Again to Derby for, you guessed it, the Charity Problem – the final time the match was staged below this guise.
O’Sullivan had reached the final 4 finals within the competitors nevertheless it was to be three consecutive losses at that hurdle as Higgins gained for a second successive season.
2001 World Championship: O’Sullivan 18-14 Higgins
Their first of ten finals between O’Sullivan and Higgins after the flip of the century might not have been their greatest battle, nevertheless it was actually their greatest.
O’Sullivan had watched fellow Class of ’92 members Higgins and Mark Williams each declare the massive one in Sheffield, and now it was his lastly his flip, taking advantage of his first-session 6-2 buffer to efficiently maintain the 1998 champion at bay.
2001 Scottish Masters: Higgins 9-6 O’Sullivan
Higgins didn’t wallow in self pity and recovered to safe triumphs within the first three occasions of the 2001/02 snooker season.
Lastly, he managed to get one over O’Sullivan in Scotland – a 9-6 victory on the Scottish Masters in Glasgow.
2002 Premier League: O’Sullivan 9-4 Higgins
If there was ever a match that was dominated by one specific participant, it was Matchroom’s Premier League.
O’Sullivan gained the match 9 occasions between 2001 and 2011 and ten occasions in complete, with the third of these successes coming towards Higgins in 2002.
2002 Scottish Masters: O’Sullivan 9-4 Higgins
Returning to Glasgow for the beginning of the 2002/03 marketing campaign, it was a fourth title-deciding fixture in 4 years between the pair in Scotland.
O’Sullivan made it a hat-trick of titles, and it was round now when it appeared as if they solely ever crossed paths at this stage of a match.
2003 Irish Masters: O’Sullivan 10-9 Higgins
Sure, except for a few Premier League round-robin ties thrown into the hat, there could be a flurry of additional finals between O’Sullivan and Higgins within the area of just some years.
On the Citywest Resort in Dublin for the primary Irish Masters staged as a rating occasion, O’Sullivan delighted his legion of Irish followers with a terrific 10-9 triumph that concluded with an exquisite break of 128 within the ultimate body.
2005 Masters: O’Sullivan 10-3 Higgins
O’Sullivan made it 4 wins on the bounce in finals towards his esteemed rival with a thumping within the 2005 Masters.
Two of Higgins’ greatest ever profession victories, nevertheless, have been simply across the nook.
2005 Grand Prix: Higgins 9-2 O’Sullivan
Later that 12 months on the Guild Corridor in Preston, Higgins produced a efficiency for the ages to dismantle the problem of O’Sullivan, who was by now the undisputed world primary.
Higgins turned the primary participant to compile 4 consecutive century breaks and scored 494 factors with out reply – a report on the time.
2006 Masters: Higgins 10-9 O’Sullivan
Maybe their most iconic encounter total, the Wembley Convention Centre was given an appropriately dramatic send-off in what was an edge-of-your-seat climax to the 2006 Masters in London.
Main by 60 factors within the deciding body, O’Sullivan watched as Higgins orchestrated a trademark killer clearance of 64 to clinch his second Masters crown on the ultimate black.
2007 Premier League: O’Sullivan 7-4 Higgins
O’Sullivan and success in Premier League finals have been nearly as certain a factor as you would get in snooker.
It was a fourth victory within the occasion in a row for the Rocket, nevertheless it introduced an abrupt finish to his sequence of getting performed Higgins in a ultimate throughout each calendar 12 months bar three since 1995.
2016 Champion of Champions: Higgins 10-7 O’Sullivan
It took 9 extra years for O’Sullivan and Higgins to battle in one other ultimate, which turned out to be their most up-to-date.
O’Sullivan had been unbeaten within the Champion of Champions throughout three years of participation within the occasion, however Higgins introduced an finish to that with a memorable 10-7 conquering in Coventry.
2021 Gamers Championship: ?
Greater than 4 years on and they’re amazingly again once more on centre stage with the trophy on the road to battle for.
O’Sullivan boasts a 10-7 lead from their earlier encounters at this stage, and it guarantees to be one other fascinating conflict of the titans in Milton Keynes.
Featured photograph credit score: Champion of Champions Snooker