Snooker is a cue sport that is played on a large baize-covered table with pockets in each of the four corners and in the middle of each of the long side cushions. A regulation (full-size) table is 12 ft × 6 ft (3.6 m x 1.8 m). It is played using a cue, one white ball (the cue ball), 15 red balls (worth 1 point each) and 6 balls of different colours A player (or team) wins a frame (individual game) of snooker by scoring more points than the opponent(s), using the cue ball to pot the red and coloured balls. A match consists of a previously agreed-upon number of frames. Snooker is particularly popular in many of the English-speaking and Commonwealth countries, and in China, with the top professional players attaining multi-million pound career earnings from the game.
In snooker, a break is the total point score achieved by a player in a single visit to the table. A player's proficiency at building big breaks, particularly century breaks (scores over 100), is widely used as a measure of their overall skill.
The maximum break possible under normal circumstances is 147. This is often known as a maximum, or a 147 (or orally a one-four-seven). The 147 is amassed by potting all 15 reds with 15 blacks for 120 points then all six colours for a further 27 points. Scores above 147 are possible in the case of free balls due to fouling by the opponent.
In six-red snooker, the maximum break is 75 points (83 with free ball), as there are fewer reds and thus fewer black-scoring opportunities. In snooker plus, the maximum is 210 (221 with free ball) due to the additional, high point-value colours.
Alexander "Alex" Gordon Higgins (18 March 1949 – 24 July 2010), also known by his nickname of Hurricane Higgins, was a Northern Irish professional snooker player who was twice World Champion and twice runner-up. Higgins earned the nickname The Hurricane because of his speed of play. Higgins was also a former World Doubles champion with Jimmy White and won the World Cup three times with the All Ireland team. He also came to be known as the People's Champion because of his popularity.
Higgins is often credited to have brought the game of snooker to a wider audience and contributing to its peak in popularity in the eighties.