Former world champion Shaun Murphy has told how his love for the sport started by a “complete fluke”.
In 2018 Murphy told Dafasnooker how his passion for the game grew at a time when his parents were going through some difficult financial problems.
Aged just eight at the time, Murphy had set his sights on a new Commodore 64 computer as a Christmas present and asked his parents if he could have one.
But his parents couldn’t afford it, however, they had a different idea up their sleeve.
Instead, Murphy was given an old Steve Davis brand children’s snooker table and he never looked back.
Murphy said: “I got into snooker by complete fluke.
“Everyone out there at a certain age will remember the old Commodore 64 and I asked mum and dad for this computer for Christmas. All my mates had it. I had no interest in snooker whatsoever.
“Little did I know at the time but my parents were going through a big financial crisis and we ended up losing our house and a lot of other things after that but they couldn’t afford the computer.
“In a last ditched attempt for a gift my mum went to Toys R Us and bought this little Steve Davis Pot Black snooker table.
“I came down stairs all bright eyed and there was this snooker table. I remember looking at it and thinking ‘What’s that? That’s not what I asked for’.
“But I just got involved with it and pretty much straight away I loved it.
“There’s pictures of me from that day when I’m knocking a few balls around. I treasure those memories. “
Murphy didn’t look back, using his first table to take up a massive interest in the game and going on to become a professional in the late 1990s.
In 2005 he became world champion beating Matthew Stevens in one of the most exciting finals played at Sheffield’s Crucible Theatre.
It was the first time that a qualifier won the World Championship since Terry Griffiths in 1979.
Murphy has since won eight more ranking events as well as other big titles including The Masters and Champion of Champions.