John Higgins pocketed a £25,000 bonus in Preston tonight with a magical 147 maximum break in his LG Cup final against world champion and world number one Mark Williams.
The 28-year-old Scot potted 15 reds, 15 blacks and took the six colours to achieve snooker’s perfect clearance in frame 11.
However, the third maximum of his career owed a lot to a large slice of good fortune on the 12th black.
Higgins missed his initial shot but his face turned from disappointment to joy within a few seconds after the black rattled in the jaws.
The ball bounced across the table, hit the side cushion and rolled back to drop in the same pocket.
It was the 47th maximum in snooker history, the 26th in a ranking event and the 23rd on television but only the fourth in a final.
Higgins’ success enabled him to close the deficit to 6-5 in his race to nine with the World, UK and Masters champion.
It was the Wishaw professional’s second century of a high quality final.
He compiled a superb 142 total clearance in frame four which overtook Ken Doherty’s 140 for a £5,000 high break bonus.
Higgins, who becomes only the fourth player to make three maximums, disappeared from the arena for several minutes to compose himself.
When the match resumed Williams restored his two-frame cushion with a break of 78 to lead 7-5 at the mid-session interval.
Ronnie O’Sullivan holds the record for the fastest 147 break, taking just 320 seconds against Mick Price at the 1997 World Championship.