John Higgins has 'lost appetite' for snooker after World Championship losses

John Higgins is a four-time world champion

John Higgins says he has lost his appetite for snooker after finishing runner-up at the past two World Championships.

The 43-year-old Scot reached the final of the China Championship last month and is into the second round of the English Open after beating Li Yuan.

But Higgins said: “I’m struggling to get up for playing and practising.

“I’ve lost in two big world finals in the last two years and it’s knocked the stuffing out of me a little bit.”

Despite having won four world titles in a stellar career, Higgins says the defeats in 2017 and 2018 by Mark Selby and Mark Williams have eaten away at him.

“I’ve not been practising, I’ve not been playing. I missed the first three tournaments of the season, then played out in Asia,” said the world number four.

“I lost the first game [to Ryan Day in the Shanghai Masters] and then I was out there for two weeks with my little brother, just basically a holiday really.

“I was surprised I got to the final of the China Championship because my play was terrible.

“I’m sure it’ll come back, at some point during the season, but right now it’s not there.”

Higgins will meet Nigel Bond in the English Open second round, while fellow Scot Stephen Maguire faces Yan Bingtao after overcoming English amateur James Cahill in a deciding frame.

Scotland’s Anthony McGill, Alan McManus and Eden Sharav all came through first-round encounters on Monday.

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