Robertson roars back to thwart Higgins in final

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NEIL Robertson exacted a measure of revenge on John Higgins as he won the battle of the game’s form players to lift the Wuxi Classic yesterday.

The Australian was beaten by Higgins in the season-opening Bulgarian PTC two weeks ago, but reversed the outcome in China with an exhilarating 10-7 victory over the Scot.

Robertson, the 31-year-old Australian and world No 1, did trail the rejuvenated Higgins at the interval, but returned refreshed after it to take the first ranking event title of the new season and the £80,000 winner’s cheque.

Six frames on the bounce took him from 5-2 down to 8-5 ahead and, even though Higgins twice got back to within two, Robertson was able to shake off some late anxiety and rack up an eighth major career win.

The victory also sets the 2010 world champion up nicely for his next appointment at his home event, the Australian Open, in July.

The Melbourne potter, who had the top break in the match with a 113, was off the pace in the opening session – perhaps underdone after a routine passage to the final – and headed to the break a frame down as Higgins continued his form from Sofia.

He had the momentum from taking the last two frames of the afternoon, though, and continued in that vein to send Higgins to defeat.