Hitman Shocks Higgins to take EPTC6 Title!

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Nottingham’s Michael Holt may not have shown anything in the way of form this season until this point but he tonight he has shocked world number two John Higgins 4-3 to become the 12th winner of a PTC event this season and secure a place in the PTC finals at the expense of Barry Hawkins.

Click here to view the final PTC Order of Merit at WWWSnooker.

Through to the last 16 of a PTC event for the first time, Michael Holt was probably not one of the fancied men this morning, indeed I had tipped the familiar faces of Shaun Murphy John Higgins and Mark Selby to be the ones to beat.

As fate would have it however, Michael actually managed to defeat all three of those players, plus Jamie Cope today to win the event and take home €10,000.

Early on in the final against John Higgins it appeared that Michael might in fact take the match with room to spare as he led 2-0 and then had the chance to move further clear as he led 66-62 in the third frame. Unfortunately for Michael however, he lost that close frame and soon found himself 3-2 down, facing defeat in a match that he had at one stage led once again in his career.

It was at that point though that Michael threw away the script and was able to draw level again at 3-3 before soon taking the decider to take the title and end John Higgins’ unbeaten run since returning to action earlier this month. I had not appreciated that there have been circumstances in his personal life recently that have affected his performances but hopefully this will bring some cheer to the Holt household.

As well as boosting Michael’s hopes of remaining inside the top 48 following the UK Championship, the result also lifts him up to 13th in the PTC Order of Merit, well inside the all-important top 24 (or should that be top 26 given the ineligibility of Ding Junhui and John Higgins for the final stages. Spare a thought though for Barry Hawkins who now misses out on a spot in the Grand Finals as a result of the Hitman’s success.

As for John Higgins I’m sure that despite this loss he will be more than happy with his return to competitive action during this last couple of weeks and the question now is whether he will be able to reproduce that form in front of the TV cameras in Telford.

Twelve events, twelve different winners. What were the chances?