Cancer-battling Ali Carter humbled by support

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Two-time World Championship finalist Ali Carter is ready for the fight ahead after being diagnosed with testicular cancer.

World Snooker released a statement confirming the 33-year-old found out about the illness last week and would undergo surgery today. It is a further health scare for Carter to deal with having been diagnosed with Crohn’s disease back in 2003, but the Essex man is already looking forward to his recovery.

He tweeted: “Thank-you to everyone for there support! Just want to get through this week then I will concentrate on getting better. Love you all!”

Carter, known on the snooker circuit by his nickname of ‘the Captain’ as he holds a pilot’s license, is a three-time ranking event winner who lost both of his World finals to Ronnie O’Sullivan. He has found success easier to come by as his career has progressed – the O’Sullivan losses came in 2008 and 2012 respectively – and is one of the most popular players on the tour. Six-time World finalist Jimmy White, who has survived testicular cancer himself, tweeted: “Sending my love to @TheCaptain147 I know you’ve got the strength to beat it mate.”

Reigning UK and Masters champion, Mark Selby, added: “Just heard the devastating news about Ali Carter. I cannot believe this, he is a great lad and a great snooker player, he does not deserve this. I want to wish him all the best with his treatment, he is a strong person and he will come through this.

“Keep strong buddy, my thoughts are with you and your family at this tough time.”

Currently ranked 15th in the world, it remains to be seen when Carter will next be on the baize, but World Snooker chairman Barry Hearn hopes it will not be too long. He said in a statement: “Ali has shown in his battle against Crohn’s disease that he is a fighter. We hope for a positive outcome and everyone in snooker is 100 per cent behind him. We look forward to seeing him back on the circuit soon.”