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World Championship: Mark Williams beats John Higgins to win third title

Mark Williams won his third World Championship - 15 years after his last - by holding off John Higgins' stunning fightback in a classic Crucible final.

Williams, 43, won 18-16 to become the oldest champion since fellow Welshman Ray Reardon, who was 45 in 1978.

He won seven frames on the trot to take a 14-7 lead but Scot Higgins, 42, came back magnificently to take eight of the next nine and level at 15-15.

However, Williams responded in style to secure a famous victory.

The final was the closest since 2005 when Shaun Murphy beat Matthew Stevens by the same scoreline.

Williams claimed a record £425,000 at the Sheffield venue, taking his total prize money to £750,000 for the year, while Higgins' wait for a fifth title continues.

"It's unbelievable. Twelve months ago I wasn't even here. I watched it in a caravan," Williams told BBC Sport.

"I was seriously thinking of giving up, but my wife Joanne said I can't sleep in the house 24 hours a day."

And after saying earlier in the tournament that he would speak to the media naked if he won the title, Williams walked into his news conference undressed apart from a towel.