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World Snooker Championships Clive Everton
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Clive Everton's Crucible History
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1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988
1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000
Neal Foulds

Joe Johnson had not experienced much success in his year as world champion as the numerous off-table demands ate away at his practice time and many expected him to lose in the first round on his return to the Crucible.

In the event he only beat Eugene Hughes 10-9 but a 13-7 victory over Murdo Macleod, who had become the first Scot to win a match at the Crucible in defeating Rex Williams 10-5, restored a measure of confidence to his season.

He led Stephen Hendry, prodigiously talented but inconsistent, 12-8 in the quarter-finals and maintained his composure to win 13-12 after the Scottish teenager had given a preview of his nineties excellence by winning the next four frames to level.

In the semi-finals, Johnson defeated Neal Foulds 16-9 and faced Davis again. Davis, determined not to suffer three successive world final defeats, led 14-10 after three sessions but hopes of an astounding Johnson double were raised when this was cut to 14-13.

Davis did, however, hold himself together sufficiently to lead 15-13 and victory arrived at 18-14. After two disappointing years at the Crucible, the king was back on his throne.

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