Snooker: Heavy weather for Higgins

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John Higgins will find winning the German Open in Bingen a tall order if he continues to play as he did in overcoming Martin Clark yesterday. The Scot booked his place in the last eight, but it was not quite the cruise the 5-2 scoreline suggests.

"I don't stand a chance of winning the title if I play like that again," said Higgins, who next meets Anthony Hamilton or Jason Ferguson.

In fact, Clark let the 22-year-old Higgins off the hook when he missed a final black in frame seven after looking set to cut his deficit in half.

Higgins' fellow Scot Jamie Burnett had earlier reached the last eight of a ranking tournament for the first time in his career. The 22-year- old from Hamilton recovered from 3-1 and 4-2 down to beat the 1991 World Matchplay champion, Gary Wilkinson from Nottinghamshire, but he said: "I didn't really deserve to win.

"Gary split the pack on a number of occasions and was unlucky not to land on anything. But I haven't always had the rub of the green in the past so I am not complaining too much."

Burnett's reward is a guaranteed pay day of pounds 7,500, plus a match with the world champion, Ken Doherty, or Pakistan's Shokat Ali.