John Higgins has admitted that his decision to use a new cue this season has been partly inspired by the cue power of other players such as World Champion Judd Trump.
The four-time Crucible king is currently preparing to face Yan Bingtao in today’s Betway UK Championship quarter-finals. Next week he will compete in his home event, the 19.com Scottish Open in Glasgow, meeting Jamie O’Neill in the first round.
The legendary Scot, who has 30 ranking titles to his name, thinks that a change was required to spark his 2019/20 campaign into action and believes that he now has a larger repertoire of shots.
“It doesn’t matter how long you have been in the sport. You still look at the winners of today and the certain things they do to try and improve your own game,” said 44-year-old Higgins. “I wanted a new fresh impetus, but also I wanted a bit more power. When you look at players like Judd Trump, Neil Robertson and Shaun Murphy, they have recently changed their cue and they are winning events. It isn’t that difficult to get used to a new cue.
“I’ve never had the greatest cue power. But my old cue just felt dead. I had made a few little alterations, including adding some weight to the cue. I thought that might help but it was probably detrimental and made things worse. That is why I just decided to get a new cue.
“There is nobody in the game that has the cue power of Judd. It isn’t as if I am going to get a new cue and have the power of him. However, there were a few little shots that I thought I couldn’t play. I can play them a bit better now.”
Higgins recorded a fine 6-4 defeat of 2015 World Champion Stuart Bingham on Wednesday to reach the UK Championship quarter-finals. He hopes he can continue his form this week and carry the momentum to Glasgow.
“I’m happy enough going into Christmas, with the Scottish coming up and a couple of qualifying rounds. I’m being a bit more consistent. I’ve had a couple of semi-finals and obviously whatever I go on to do here in York.
“I won the Scottish Masters in 2001 and that was brilliant as most of my family and friends were there. Other events it is just your close family that come to watch. It would be brilliant to try and win the Scottish Open in front of my home crowd.”
There’s still time to secure your place at next week’s 19.com Scottish Open at the Emirates Arena in Glasgow, with tickets available from just £10. Make sure you take the chance to see the likes of Higgins, Ronnie O’Sullivan, Judd Trump and Ding Junhui in action. Click here to buy now.