The records however ring very familiar to snooker. In Formula One, only one driver can claim to have seven World titles, while in snooker, the same is true in terms of Crucible wins (Schumacher-Hendry).
In second place more often than not, in terms of race wins, fastest laps, podiums etc. comes Alain Prost. He is a four time World Champion, but what's more, opinion of him would not suggest that. He is often labelled as a 'professor', astute and, at times, boring in many opinions. Very often however, he got the better of his main rival. See what I'm getting at?
Far more highly thought of, as far as I could gather, is the awesomely talented Ayrton Senna. He won three world titles, was extravagent in what he did and possessed an other worldly sort of personality that raised eyebrows everywhere he went. His talent has put him ahead of the more succesful Prost in many, many greatest ever lists.
To top it all off, their was a very talented Brit, a nice guy that everyone loved and racked up a plethora of wins. Won fuckall world titles, though there were plenty worse drivers who did just that. Stirling Moss, meet your cousin Jimmy White.
So what does all this mean? Well, even I'm not entirely sure, but I'll say this: I think titles count too much in the eyes of many snooker fans in judging the greatest players. It doesn't seem to work that way in Formula One, where drivers such as Senna, Clark, Moss and to a lesser extent Ascari, Raikkonen, Hakkinen, Gilles Villeneuve & Ronnie Peterson are hoisted aloft on the grounds of their inate talent.
History has a strange way of working itself out. Fans who judge on ability rather than titles tend to be scorned. Higgins is being judged as the greatest of his era already by many, and the second best of all time. But I'm still not convinced.
Anyway, it only shows how opinions work. Everyone's got one, that's the beauty and the beast of it
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