"Hurricane Higgins", 50, who appears today in a BBC 1 documentary on smoking and cancer, announced the move in the Irish capital yesterday. Looking haggard and with his voice hoarse, he recalled the worst days of his illness, saying: "I lost about four stone." He is to join in a case being brought to court on behalf of up to 200 people by a Dublin solicitor, Peter McDonnell.
Mr Higgins, 50, born in Northern Ireland, described himself yesterday as "a living example of the damages of smoking", adding: "I intend to fight this case to the end."
Mr Higgins was 22 when he won the snooker world championship at his first attempt in 1972, and repeated the feat in 1982. Mr McDonnell said his move would be "a great boost to the others fighting this case".