Image for Alex Higgins: The People's ChampionNot currently available on BBC iPlayer

Duration: 1 hour

One man transfixed television viewers during snooker's golden age - Alex 'Hurricane' Higgins. This poignant documentary charts the remarkable rise and fall of the snooker genius, from his early days growing up in Belfast to his climb to the top of the sport as two-time world champion.

Higgins was pure showbiz, a mercurial talent at the table who played the game like nobody had done before. Boxing had Muhammad Ali, football was blessed by George Best - snooker had Alex Higgins. Yet like Best, Higgins's brilliance was flawed by his demons. We chart the depressing lows - the alcohol abuse, threatening to have fellow Ulsterman Dennis Taylor shot, headbutting a senior member of snooker's hierarchy and falling out of a top floor window and living to tell the tale after a row with his then-girlfriend.

The Higgins story is completed with the final chapter of his life spent battling throat cancer; desperate hours spent in pubs and working men's clubs trying to rekindle his halcyon days; finally unable to eat properly because he'd lost his teeth and in the end, ultimately found dead alone in sheltered accommodation.

At times uplifting, but at other moments very sad - this is a rollercoaster journey charting the life of snooker's 'rock and roll star'.

Contributors include Jimmy White, Ronnie O'Sullivan, Dennis Taylor, Barry Hearn, Steve Davis, Ray Reardon and members of the Higgins family.

Last on

Thu 15 May 2014 02:15 BBC Four

Credits

Narrator
James Nesbitt
Producer
Jason Bernard
Director
Jason Bernard
Participant
Jimmy White
Participant
Ronnie O'Sullivan
Participant
Dennis Taylor
Participant
Barry Hearn
Participant
Steve Davis
Participant
Ray Reardon

Broadcasts

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