Birmingham snookered?

Has BIrmingham missed a trick or two? I was surprised to read that an early victory for snooker champion Alex Higgins, who has just died, was at a venue in Birmingham. This was 1972 it is reported in the Guardian in a now demolished British Legion Hall, 10 years later snooker became a major spectacle and Higgins had moved to the Crucible in Sheffield for his victory.
Birmingham prides itself in being a major centre for national and international events so how did it miss out on being a major venue for this after early tournaments had been hosted here? Higgins was a highly entertaining player who earned his nickname “Hurricane” for the speed of his play. None of the hanging around contemplating the next mistake for him. Like other celebrities fame did him no good and later appearances showed him as something of a wreck. He still managed to entertain but we were left with a feeling of pity to see a one-time champion struggling. No doubt the throat cancer which finally killed him at just 61 was a factor and that he had struggled with this for some 10 years draws out our deep sympathy.

From the Stirrer 27/7/2010

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