'Hurricane' Higgins' friends to use medical fund for 'great send off'

SOME £10,000 raised to help Alex Higgins receive medical treatment prior to his death will go towards his funeral, it was revealed yesterday.

Higgins' friend and former personal assistant Will Robinson said the remaining money from an auction and Manchester fundraising dinner will be used to give the snooker star a "great send-off".

"The money left in our fund is going to pay for the funeral," Mr Robinson, 43, said.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"There was 15,000; there's probably about 10,000 in total when we get everything in. Now that's going to pay for a great send-off."

Higgins travelled to Spain earlier this month for a dental operation but medics deemed him too frail to go ahead with it.

Mr Robinson, who was 15 when he first met Higgins, said the snooker player's sister Jean and friend and fellow player Jimmy White asked for the funds to be used for the funeral.

He said details have not yet been finalised as Mr White is in Thailand. "He's asked to hold things up until he gets back. That's the plan and the family have agreed to that," Mr Robinson said.

Mr Robinson, who worked as Higgins' personal assistant for five years from the age of 18, described him as one of the greatest sportsmen ever. "A genius. There's two things that made snooker what it is today," he said. "One is colour television and the second thing is Alex Higgins.

"He was the people's champion. He was the person that everybody wanted to watch."

Higgins was found dead in his Belfast home on Saturday. He died of throat cancer after being diagnosed more than a decade ago.