Jimmy White


James Warren White, MBE (born 2 May 1962) is an English senior snooker player who has won three seniors World titles. Nicknamed "The Whirlwind" because of his fluid, attacking style of play, White is the 1980 World Amateur Champion, 2009 Six-red World champion, 3 time World Seniors Champion (2010, 2019, 2020), 2019 Seniors 6-Red World Champion and 1984 World Doubles champion with Alex Higgins.

Jimmy White
MBE
Born (1962-05-02) 2 May 1962 (age 59)
Tooting, England
Sport country England
NicknameThe Whirlwind[1]
Professional1980–
Highest ranking2 (1987/881988/89)
Current ranking 88 (as of 4 May 2021)
Career winnings£4,812,154
Highest break147:
1992 World Championship
Century breaks321
Tournament wins
Ranking10
Non-ranking25

White has won two of snooker's three majors: the UK Championship (in 1992) and the Masters (in 1984) and a total of ten ranking events; he is currently tenth on the all-time list of ranking event winners. He reached six World Championship finals but never won the event; the closest he came was in 1994 when he lost in a final frame decider against Stephen Hendry. He spent 21 seasons ranked in snooker's elite top 16. In team events, he won the Nations Cup and the World Cup with England. He is one of a select number of players to have made over 300 century breaks in professional competition. White was also the first left-handed player, and the second player overall, to record a maximum break at the World Championship.

Early life


White was born in Streathbourne Road, Tooting, London, England, and studied at Ernest Bevin School. He never achieved academic success, as he was often truant from school from the age of eight or nine, spending more and more time at Ted Zanoncelli's snooker hall. It was around this time that White met Tony Meo with whom he would compete in money matches in many venues.[2] His natural aptitude for snooker led to a successful amateur career. After winning the English Amateur Championship in 1979, a year later he became the youngest ever winner of the World Amateur Snooker Championship, aged 18, a record since surpassed by Ian Preece and Hossein Vafaei.

Career


With a host of major titles and achievements, including ten ranking tournaments, White's overall record ranks him well up the list of snooker's most successful players. The BBC describes him as a "legend".[3] A left-hander, he reached the World Professional Championship Final on six occasions (1984, 1990–1994) but failed to win the sport's most prestigious title since his first attempt in 1981. Nonetheless, his consistency waned in the 2000s and a first-round defeat in the 2006 World Championship saw White drop out of the world's top 32 player rankings. White's continued slide down the rankings saw him drop to 65th but he recovered slightly to move up to no. 56 for the 2009–10 season. White is one of only seven players to have completed a maximum break at the Crucible Theatre, doing so in the 1992 World Snooker Championship. He has compiled more than 300-century breaks during his career.[4]

1976-1991

White's greatest achievement of his young career was in winning the English Amateur Championships. In the London Section, he beat M Goodchild 4–0, D Asbury 4–3, R Birt 4–0, Tony Meo 4–2 in the semi-finals and Danny Adds 4–1 in the final. This took him to the Southern Area proper where he beat Mark Wildman 4–3, Meirion Williams 4–3, George Eaton 5–3 and Cliff Wilson 8–5 in the final. Dave Martin, who won the Northern Section, was beaten 13–10 in the final itself. He suffered a couple of unexpected losses after this – to Walt Ley in the Westward Ho! Open semi-final, 2–3 and to Dave Gilbert, 2–3, in the London Final of the British Junior (U-19) Championships 1–3 (White made a break of 105 in an earlier round). He came back, however, by retaining the Wandsworth Classic beating Tony O'Beirne, Wally West and Dave Gilbert in the last three rounds and also reaching the final of the Pontins Spring Open (out of 1034 entries), beating Doug Mountjoy 4–1, Neville Suthers 4–1, John Howell 4–0 and Paul Medati 4–1 before losing 3–7 to Steve Davis, despite Davis giving White thirty points start per frame. He was knocked out of the 1st round of the Pontins junior competition by John Carney. In the Lucania Junior Masters, he was beaten on frame countback but showed his class to reach the final of the Warners Open, losing to Tony Meo 2–5, having beaten John Law, John Virgo and Nick Fairall. Steve Davis beat him again, this time 4–0 in the North Ormesby Invitation (after having beaten Willie Thorne 4–0 in the quarter-final) and then lost in the next three tournaments to Dennis Hughes 1–5 (Demmy Manchester Classic), B Jones (Pontins Autumn Open) and Roy Connor. In the Canadian Open, he defeated Tony Knowles 9–5 but lost 3–9 to Steve Davis in the last 16.[citation needed]

1980 opened with him winning the Demmy Pro-Am, defeating Tony Knowles 5–1, Willie Thorne 5–1, Dave Martin 5–1, Alex Higgins 5–3 and Steve Davis in the final 5–2. Davis beat White in the semi-finals of the Invitation tournament at Louth Town & Country Club. Having beaten Thorne, again, 5–3, David pipped White 6–5. White made an unsuccessful defence of his English Amateur title when he lost to Mike Darrington in the semi-finals of the Southern Area, 5–8, having beaten Dave Gilbert 8–5 and Geoff Foulds 8–2. Tony Knowles beat him in an early round of the Pegasus Snooker Club Pro-Am 3–1 and he had to scratch for being late in the London & South Area of the British Junior Championships having earlier beaten Neal Foulds 3–1. Charlie Gay knocked him out of the Westward Ho! tournament 2–0 and in a qualifying round of the Pontins Spring Open, he lost to Maurice Suckling. Defeats to Greg Baxter, in an early round of the Heineken Lager Open and to Joe Johnson in the North Ormesby Invitation preceded a trip to the Canadian Open where he beat Vic Harris 9–8 before losing to Alex Higgins 7–9. He was also beaten by Dave Gilbert, 0–3, in the Lucania Masters.[citation needed]

White established himself as a top professional in 1981. After losing 8–10 to eventual champion Steve Davis in the first round of World Championship, White went on to win his first professional titles – the Scottish Masters (defeating Cliff Thorburn in the final) and the Northern Ireland Classic (defeating Davis).[citation needed]

The World Championship has provided the theatre for White's greatest disappointments. In 1982, he led Alex Higgins 15–14 in their semi-final, was up 59–0 in the penultimate frame and was a red and colour away from the final. After missing a red with the rest, however, he could only watch as Higgins compiled a frame-winning 69 break. Higgins won the deciding frame that followed to reach the final.[citation needed]

In 1984 White won the Masters, beating Terry Griffiths 9–5 in the final.[5] He followed this success by reaching his first World Championship final. Trailing Steve Davis 4–12 after the first two sessions, White responded by reducing the deficit to 15–16. He then made an aggressive clearance of 65 to take the score to 16–17, but was unable to build upon a 40-point lead in the following frame, and lost 16–18. White did, however, become a World Doubles Champion later that year when he and Alex Higgins defeated Willie Thorne and Cliff Thorburn 10–2 in the final of the World Doubles Championship.[citation needed]

In 1986 White reached his second Masters final, but was defeated by Cliff Thorburn. However, he won the Classic and also retained the Irish Masters title he won in 1985. White won the Classic when he beat Thorburn in the final frame after needing a snooker. Later in the year, he overcame veteran Rex Williams 10–6 to win his first Grand Prix title.[citation needed]

White's third-ranking win – the 1987 British Open – helped him to end the 1986–87 season as World number 2, behind Steve Davis who defeated him 16–11 in the semi-finals of the 1987 World Championship. Later that year White and Davis contested a memorable 1987 UK Championship final which Davis won 16–14.[citation needed]

In 1988 he defeated John Campbell, Stephen Hendry and Tony Knowles to reach his fourth World Championship semi-final. He played Terry Griffiths and, trailing 11–13, lost a tied frame on a respotted black. Griffiths went on to reach the final courtesy of a 16–11 win. White did at least manage to consolidate his number-2 world ranking. However the 1988–89 season was less successful, and White's ranking slipped. He trailed John Virgo 11–12 in the second round of the 1989 World Championship and looked beaten when his opponent was on a break of 26 in the following frame. Virgo, however, called a foul on himself and White was able to win 13–12. The reprieve was short-lived as White was soundly beaten 7–13 by eventual finalist John Parrott in the quarter-finals. White avenged this defeat later in the year by beating Parrott 18–9 in the final of the invitational World Matchplay.[citation needed]

In 1990, White recorded a 16–14 victory over Steve Davis in the semi-finals of the World Championship. It was Davis's first defeat in the event in four years. White subsequently lost his second World Championship final 12–18 to Stephen Hendry. However, White beat Hendry 18–9 to retain his World Matchplay title later in the year and that win was followed by a 10–4 victory over Hendry (after leading 9–0) in the final of the 1991 Classic. White continued his run of success with victory in the short-lived World Masters, beating Tony Drago 10–6 in the final.[citation needed]

Steve James ended Hendry's reign as World Champion in the 1991 World Championship and White, in turn, defeated James to reach the final. He played John Parrott and was whitewashed in the first session 0–7. Although White managed to close the gap to 7–11, Parrott was able to seal an 18–11 victory. Parrott then overcame White 16–13 to win the 1991 UK Championship later in 1991.[citation needed]

1992–2002

White started 1992 positively and picked up his second British Open title, beating Steve Davis in the semi-finals and James Wattana in the final. He won another ranking title, the European Open, shortly after.[citation needed]

White was drawn against Tony Drago in the first round of the 1992 World Championship. After opening up an 8–4 lead, White made history in the 13th frame by becoming only the second player to make a maximum break in the World Championship. He won £100,000 in prize money for this achievement. Close wins over Alain Robidoux and Jim Wych followed before White met Alan McManus in the semi-finals, where he pulled away from 4–4 to win 16–7. He played Stephen Hendry in the final and won each of the first two sessions to open up a 10–6 lead, which he extended to 12–6 and 14–8. From 14–9, White lost three successive frames from commanding positions. At 14–12, White went in-off when compiling a potentially frame-winning break. Hendry drew level at 14–14 without conceding a further point and won the closely contested 29th and 30th frames to lead 16–14. Two century breaks completed Hendry's ten-frame winning streak and a remarkable 18–14 victory.[citation needed]

White responded well from this significant setback in the early part of the 1992–93 season. He defeated Ken Doherty 10–9 to claim his second 1992 Grand Prix title and followed this with an impressive victory in the 1992 UK Championship. After defeating Alan McManus 9–7 in the semi-finals, White opened up a commanding 6–1 lead in the first session of the final against John Parrott, from where he secured a 16–9 win. White has stated that this was among the best matches he has ever played.[2]

However White toiled for the remainder of the season, and his struggles continued at the 1993 World Championship. He did, however, manage to overcome Joe Swail, Doug Mountjoy and Dennis Taylor to reach the semi-finals. White lost the first five frames of his semi-final with James Wattana but, from 2–6, he won 12 successive frames en route to a 16–9 victory. However he proved no match for Stephen Hendry in the final, and Hendry's century break in his first visit to the table proved portentous, as White was beaten 18–5 with a session to spare. Only John Parrott (in 1989) has suffered a heavier defeat in a World Championship final. White did, however, manage to end the season on a high note when he beat Alan McManus to win the Matchroom League.[citation needed]

White endured a lacklustre campaign in the 1993–94 season but managed to reach the 1994 World Championship final for a fifth successive year, becoming only the second player after Steve Davis (1983–89) to achieve this. For the fourth time in five years, White's opponent in the final was Stephen Hendry and the defending champion opened up a 5–1 lead. White recovered well to lead 13–12 and made a break of 75 to take the match into a deciding frame. In the final frame, White was on a break of 29 and leading the frame by 37 points to 24 when he missed a straightforward black off its spot. Hendry cleared with a technically straightforward break of 58 to win the title.[citation needed]

White's form continued to decline the following season and he failed to reach a ranking final. However, his results on the table were greatly overshadowed, when he was diagnosed with testicular cancer during the season. He recovered after having his left testicle removed.[2]

At the 1995 World Championship, White was involved in a controversial first-round match against South African Peter Francisco. From 2–2 White was able to pull away and win convincingly by 10 frames to 2. Shortly after it emerged that large sums of money had been placed on White to win the match by the eventual scoreline. The ensuing investigation found Francisco guilty of misconduct and banned him for five years. However no evidence was found against White, and he was cleared of any wrongdoing.[2]

White put this controversy behind him and overcame David Roe and John Parrott to reach his tenth World Championship semi-final. In his match with Stephen Hendry, White could only watch as the defending champion made a 147 break to go 8–4 in front. White recovered well to 7–8 and won three successive frames to reduce his arrears from 9–14 to 12–14. However, Hendry proved too strong and ran out a 16–12 win.[citation needed]

White's ranking slipped from 7th to 13th at the end of the 1995–96 season and he was beaten 13–12 in a second-round encounter with Peter Ebdon in the 1996 World Championship. White endured further personal problems later in 1996 with the deaths of his brother Martin and mother Lil. His mother's death caused him to pull out of the 1996 Mosconi Cup pool competition.[citation needed]

In the 1996–97 season White failed to win a professional match until February and a first-round defeat at the 1997 World Championship against Anthony Hamilton (9–10, after leading 8–4) saw him drop out of the top-16 in the world rankings.[citation needed]

A run to the semi-finals of the 1997 Grand Prix helped to remedy this and White then enjoyed a great form at the 1998 World Championship. After qualifying to play Stephen Hendry in the first round, White opened with a century break and uncharacteristically shrewd matchplay enabled him to open up a 7–0 lead with only one further break over 50. Despite losing the next three frames from winning positions, White was able to seal a memorable 10–4 success and became the first player to beat Hendry twice at the World Championship. White followed this with a 13–3 win over Darren Morgan which included a break of 144. In his quarter-final against Ronnie O'Sullivan, however, White reverted to his more familiar all-out attacking style and lost the first session 1–7.[2] Although he fought back to 6–9, White succumbed to 7–13.[citation needed]

After regaining his top-16 ranking in the 1999–2000 season White started 2000 by reaching the semi-finals of the Welsh Open, where he lost 5–6 to Stephen Lee, despite leading 4–1 at one point of the match. He then defeated Marco Fu and John Higgins to reach the quarter-finals of the Masters, and he followed this up with a run to the quarter-finals of the World Championship. On both occasions, however, he was beaten by Matthew Stevens. Largely due to his poor form in the 1998–99 season, White also lost his top-16 place. He fought back the following season, reaching the final of the 2000 British Open (losing 6–9 to Peter Ebdon) and the semi-finals of the 2000 Grand Prix in the early part of the campaign. His only other victory of note, however, was a 6–2 defeat of Ronnie O'Sullivan in the 2001 Masters and White subsequently failed to qualify for the 2001 World Championship.[citation needed]

Ranked 11 at the start of the 2001–02 season, White performed steadily in the ranking events without reaching a semi-final. In the invitational 2002 Masters he beat Matthew Stevens 6–1 and came back from 2–5 behind to defeat O'Sullivan 6–5 in the quarter-finals. He similarly recovered from 2–5 down in his semi-final with Mark Williams but lost 5–6. He lost 3–13 in his second-round match with Matthew Stevens at the 2002 World Championship and issued an immediate apology after hitting the cue ball off the table in frustration when trailing 2–5.[citation needed]

2003–2009

White won only two ranking event matches in the 2002–03 season but was able to maintain his top-16 ranking. He came back from 1–5 down to defeat World Champion Peter Ebdon 6–5 in their first-round at the 2003 Masters.[citation needed]

In the 2003–04 season White produced his most consistent season in over a decade. After reaching the semi-finals of the 2003 UK Championship in November 2003, White defeated Neil Robertson, Stephen Hendry and Peter Ebdon to reach the semi-finals of the 2004 Masters – where he lost a tight match against Ronnie O'Sullivan. White followed this up with further victories over Hendry and Robertson en route to the final of the European Open in Malta, but was beaten 3–9 by world number 48 Stephen Maguire. His last ranking victory to date came in April 2004, when White defeated Shaun Murphy, John Parrott, Ian McCulloch, Peter Ebdon and Paul Hunter to win the Players Championship in Glasgow – his first ranking title in over 11 years. Victory in the 2004 World Championship could have given White the number-one ranking, but he was beaten 10–8 by qualifier Barry Pinches after leading 4–2.[citation needed]

White's consistency diminished in the 2004–05 season. Although his ranking rose to number 8 he was unable to reach the quarter-finals of any ranking event. However, he made two more memorable comebacks in the 2005 Masters. White trailed Matthew Stevens 2–5 in the first round and pulled back to 4–5 after needing two snookers in the ninth frame. White went on to win 6–5 and beat Stevens's compatriot Mark Williams by the same score in the quarter-finals after trailing 4–5. But White was beaten 6–1 by Ronnie O'Sullivan in the semi-finals.[citation needed]

White fell out of the top-32 at the end of the 2005–06 season and has not regained this status to date. He lost in the first round of the 2006 World Championship, although he did beat Stephen Hendry, Ding Junhui and World Champion Graeme Dott to reach the final of the 2006 Premier League.[citation needed]

In the 2006–07 season he qualified for only one ranking event, the 2007 China Open. He had a walkover of Stephen Lee before he lost 1–5 against John Higgins. After the season, he fell out of the top-48.[citation needed]

In the 2007–08 season he won 7 of his 16 qualifying matches. He won 4 straight matches at the 2007 Grand Prix and finished in the third place of his group, thus not qualifying for the main draw. He won one match at the 2008 Welsh Open and two matches at the 2008 World Championship. After the season, he fell out of the top-64 and remained on the tour only via the one year list.[citation needed]

He began the 2008–09 season by qualifying for the main draw of the 2008 Northern Ireland Trophy and the 2008 Shanghai Masters, but lost in the first round against Barry Hawkins 3–5 and Mark King 4–5 respectively. He won 4 of his next 7 qualifying matches (2 at the 2008 Grand Prix and at the 2008 UK Championship. After this he qualified for the main stage of the 2009 Welsh Open, but lost in the first round 1–5 against Ali Carter. He won his next qualifying match at the 2009 World Championship. In the second qualifying round he defeated Vincent Muldoon 10–8, but lost his next match 8–10 against Andy Hicks. At the end of the season he has the provisional ranking of No. 56.[citation needed]

2009–2010

Provisionally ranked number 47 for the 2009–10 season, White showed a surprising return to form at the start of the season when he reached the final of the Champion of Champions Challenge in Killarney, eventually losing 1–5 to Shaun Murphy.[6] His second tournament of the season was the Sangsom 6-red World Grand Prix in Bangkok, Thailand. He won the tournament, putting an end to his drought of titles by claiming his first since 2004. On his way to the final he defeated Shaun Murphy, defending champion Ricky Walden, Mark King, and Mark Williams, eventually beating Barry Hawkins in the final 8–6.[7] One month later, in the Paul Hunter Classic, White again reached the final but this time he lost to Shaun Murphy 0–4.[8] Two months later, on 18 October, he reached the final of the World Series of Snooker in Prague, his fourth final of the season. This time he was victorious, claiming his second title of the season by defeating Graeme Dott 5–3.[9]

In the Wembley Masters, White played Mark King in the wild card round, but lost the match 2–6.[10] Prior to the World Championship, he won only two of his six qualifying matches: he defeated Bjorn Haneveer 5–0 at the Shanghai Masters[11] and Jordan Brown 5–1 at the Welsh Open.[12] Due to this disappointment, and skipping the 2009 UK Championship for I'm a Celebrity...Get Me out of Here!, he was at risk of losing his Main Tour spot for the following season. However, he secured his place on the Main Tour for another season with a 10–8 victory over Mark Boyle at the World Championship Qualifiers. He then lost 3–10 against Ken Doherty in the next round.[13]

2010–2011

White started the 2010–11 season by entering the Players Tour Championship, his best performance coming in the first European event and at the sixth event in Sheffield, where he reached the quarter-finals each time.[14] After 12 out of 12 events White was ranked 34th in the Order of Merit.[15]

White also reached the quarter-finals of the Six-red World Championship, topping his qualifying group along the way.[16][17] He failed to qualify for the Shanghai Masters, losing his first qualifying match 3–5 against Liam Highfield.[18] He won his two qualification matches for the World Open; but lost 1–3 against Ronnie O'Sullivan in the last 32.[19][20]

White won the World Seniors Championship, defeating Steve Davis 4–1 in the final.[21] At the 2010 UK Championship in December, White lost 8–9 to Stephen Hendry in the first-round, after he had come through three qualifying rounds to get to Telford. It was only the fifth time in 24 years that White and Hendry had taken each other to the final frame and 16 years since Hendry's 18–17 win over White in the 1994 World Championship final.[22] He participated at qualifying stages of the German Masters, but lost in the second round 1–5 against Jimmy Robertson.[23] White reached the last qualifying round of the Welsh Open, but was whitewashed by Ryan Day,[24] and also qualified for the final stages of the China Open, by defeating Liu Chuang, Peter Lines and Dominic Dale,[25] but had to withdraw from the tournament due to visa problems.[26] White lost his first qualifying match for the World Championship 9–10 against Jimmy Robertson.[27]

Jimmy White at the 2011 Paul Hunter Classic

2011–2012

White began the 2011–12 season ranked number 55.[28] At a Legends Tour event in June 2011, White compiled a maximum break, unusual for the fact that he potted the first ball off the break, meaning his opponent never played a shot in the frame.[29][30] White failed to qualify for the first two ranking events of the season, as he lost 3–5 against Rory McLeod at the Australian Goldfields Open and 0–5 against Nigel Bond at the Shanghai Masters[31] White failed to defend his World Seniors Championship title, as he lost in the semi-finals 0–2 against eventual champion Darren Morgan.[32] White failed to qualify for the next two ranking events, as he lost 5–6 against Jamie Jones at the 2011 UK Championship,[33] and 4–5 against Peter Ebdon at the German Masters.[34] After the FFB Snooker Open White was ranked number 47.[35]

2013–2014

At the 2013 World Seniors Championship, White lost to Stephen Hendry in the quarter-final.[36]

He finished the 2013–14 season ranked world number 64, almost losing his place on the professional World Snooker circuit. While White remained on the tour, however, fellow veteran Steve Davis lost his place, landing outside the top 64.

2014–2015

White started the season with a 2–5 loss to Fraser Patrick in the qualifying round of the Wuxi Classic, and a 4–5 second-round loss to Scott Donaldson in the Australian Goldfields Open. He then reached the last 64 of the next two European Tour Events, losing to Stuart Bingham and Stephen Maguire respectively.

He had a better result in the EPTC Event 3 where he progressed to the last 16 before losing 0–4 to Shaun Murphy, and in the APTC Event 2 where he made it to another last 16 before once again losing 0–4 to Matthew Selt. He also qualified for the International Championship where he lost 4–6 to Barry Hawkins.

White's season ended after an 8–10 defeat to Selt in the second round of qualifying for the 2014 World Championship.

2015–2016

The 2015/16 season ended in disappointment when White lost the deciding frame of his first-round World Championship Qualifier against Gerard Greene.

2016–2017

2016 Paul Hunter Classic

White made it to the quarter-final of a ranking event at the Paul Hunter Classic in Germany, his first for over ten years. Despite several good performances, he finished outside the top 64 and lost his tour card after 37 years as a professional. World Snooker, however, chose to give White and Ken Doherty a further two-year invitational tour card.

2017–2018

In White's first ranking event of the season, he made it to the last 16 having only made three breaks over 50. He subsequently lost 1–4 to Anthony McGill and then lost 0–5 to Ryan Day in the round of 128 in the China Championship.

White won his first professional title in seven years after winning the UK Seniors Championship as part of the World Seniors Tour. In the quarter-finals, he defeated amateur Les Dodd 3–1 and another amateur Jonathan Bagley by the same scoreline in the semi-finals. He met Ken Doherty in the final and won the match 4–2, thereby winning the first edition of the event.[37] White later played in the qualifiers for the 2018 World Snooker Championship, losing his second-round match to Joe Perry.[citation needed]

2018–2019

In the first Qualifying Round of the 2019 World Snooker Championship, White drew Ross Bulman, an unranked player who had achieved enough success to be selected by the WPBSA for a place in qualifying. White took a 6–3 lead at the end of the first session and won the opening frame of the second session to lead 7–3. Bulman took the following two frames to narrow the gap to 7–5. White won the following three frames in succession to come through the tie a comfortable 10–5 winner to set up a second-round match against Ali Carter. The opening session of White's second qualifying round match with Carter finished 5–4. White was unable to win another frame however in the second session and lost the match 4–10.[citation needed]

2019–2020

Winning the World Seniors Championship in August 2019, White qualified for the 2019 Champion of Champions tournament where he narrowly lost 3–4 to Ronnie O'Sullivan in the first round.[38] White recorded no wins in ranking events until the first round of qualifying for the 2020 European Masters, in which he beat Hammad Miah 5–4 after trailing 3–1 and being 4–3 up. White was beaten in Round Two by Mark Selby. In the 2020 World Seniors Championship, Jimmy White came back to beat Ken Doherty 5–4, after trailing 4–0, to retain his title.

Personal life


White has five children.[39] In 2005, as part of a sponsorship deal with HP Sauce, he changed his name by deed poll to “James Brown” for the Masters.[40] In his autobiography, released in November 2014, White revealed that he was addicted to crack cocaine during a three-month spell of his career. He said that he went from taking cocaine to crack following his defeat by Steve Davis in the 1984 World Championship final.[41] White lives in Epsom, Surrey.[1]

In the late 1990s, White's Bull Terrier, Splinter, was dognapped and held for ransom. Splinter became the first dog to have a colour poster on the front page of The Times. White paid the ransom, and Splinter was returned to him. Splinter went on to live for another three years.[42]

Neal Foulds and Jimmy White in an interview with Shaun Murphy after his victory against Mark Allen at the 2015 German Masters

White is also a pool and poker player. Along with Steve Davis and Alex Higgins, White was a member of Europe's victorious Mosconi Cup pool team of 1995, and won the deciding match against Lou Butera.[43] He won the second Poker Million tournament, held in 2003, which also had Steve Davis at the final table.[44] He was also good friends with professional poker player, Dave "The Devilfish" Ulliott.

White is currently a commentator for Snooker coverage on Eurosport-UK.[45]

In April 2015, he appeared as a guest at a campaign event when his friend Kim Rose was standing as the UK Independence Party candidate to be MP for Southampton Itchen.[46]

White has been a fan of Chelsea since 1972.[47]

In 2018, White began a relationship with beauty queen Jade Slusarczyk.[48]

In the media


White had a cameo role as himself (as the World Billiards Champion) in Stephen Chow's 1990 kung fu and billiards comedy film, Legend of the Dragon.

On the BBC game show Big Break, White was the first player to clear the table with 3 reds remaining in the final part of the challenge (thus winning the top prize for the contestant he was playing for). He was introduced to the studio audience on each appearance with the song "Jimmy Jimmy" by the Undertones. White was also the first (and only) winner of the ITV show Tenball, featuring a mix between pool and snooker.

In the film Jack Said (a prequel to Jack Says) White played the part of Vic Lee, a dodgy snooker club owner, in his first major film role for British cinema.

White appeared in the 9th series of I'm a Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here![49] He finished in third place on 4 December 2009,[50] with Gino D'Acampo the eventual winner.[51]

On September 23, 2019, Jimmy White published an apology to Kirk Stevens on White's official Facebook page stating that in his autobiography "Second Wind" he misremembered a few stories as occurring with Kirk Stevens that in fact did not. These events were widely broadcast in the media and White wanted to make the apology public to prevent them from being repeated. White further stated that he did not intend his words to be interpreted as meaning that Kirk Stevens introduced him to crack cocaine or that Kirk Stevens ever played WPBSA snooker under the influence of drugs.[52]

White has endorsed four computer games: Jimmy White's 'Whirlwind' Snooker, Jimmy White's 2: Cueball, Jimmy White's Cueball World and Pool Paradise. These games have been released for numerous machines, from 8 bits up to second-generation consoles and mobile phones. In June 2007, he was contracted to the online billiard website Play89.[43]

White was portrayed by James Bailey in the BBC film The Rack Pack, which focused on the rivalry between Alex Higgins and Steve Davis in the 1980s [53]

Performance and rankings timeline


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Ranking[54][nb 1] [nb 2] [nb 3] 21 10 11 7 7 5 2 2 4 4 3 3 3 4 7 13 21 18 16 18 11 10 15 11 8 35 60 65 56 60 55 46 55 64 [nb 4] 90 [nb 5] 72 [nb 5] 84 [nb 5]
Ranking tournaments
European Masters[nb 6] Tournament Not Held SF 3R 1R W 1R SF WD 1R 2R NH 1R Not Held QF 1R F 1R 2R LQ NR Tournament Not Held LQ LQ LQ LQ 1R
English Open Tournament Not Held 1R 1R 2R 1R 1R
Championship League Tournament Not Held Non-Ranking Event RR
Northern Ireland Open Tournament Not Held 2R 3R 1R 1R 1R
UK Championship Non-Ranking Event QF SF 3R F 1R QF QF F W 3R 2R 3R 1R 2R 3R 3R 1R 3R 2R SF 2R 2R LQ LQ LQ A 1R LQ LQ 2R 2R 1R 1R 2R 1R 1R 2R
Scottish Open[nb 7] Not Held NR 2R 1R QF F 1R 3R F QF Not Held A SF SF 1R QF 3R 2R 1R 1R QF 3R W Tournament Not Held MR Not Held 3R 2R 1R 1R 1R
World Grand Prix Tournament Not Held NR DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ
German Masters[nb 8] Tournament Not Held 1R 1R 2R NR Tournament Not Held LQ LQ LQ 1R LQ LQ 1R LQ LQ LQ LQ
Shoot-Out Tournament Not Held NR Tournament Not Held Non-Ranking Event 3R 2R 3R 1R 2R
Welsh Open Tournament Not Held A QF QF 2R 2R 1R 2R 2R SF LQ 2R 1R 3R 2R 2R LQ LQ 1R LQ LQ LQ LQ 1R 1R 1R 1R 1R 2R 1R 2R
Players Championship[nb 9] Tournament Not Held DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ
Gibraltar Open Tournament Not Held MR 2R 2R 2R WD 4R
WST Pro Series Tournament Not Held RR
Tour Championship Tournament Not Held DNQ DNQ DNQ
World Championship A 1R SF 1R F QF QF SF SF QF F F F F F SF 2R 1R QF 1R QF LQ 2R 2R 1R 2R 1R LQ LQ LQ LQ LQ LQ LQ LQ LQ LQ LQ LQ LQ LQ LQ
Non-ranking tournaments
Champion of Champions NH A Tournament Not Held A A A A A A 1R 1R
The Masters A A 1R 1R W SF F 1R QF QF SF SF SF SF 1R SF QF 1R WR WR QF QF SF QF SF SF 1R WR LQ LQ WR A A A A A A A A A A A
Championship League Tournament Not Held RR A A A A A A A A A A A A A
World Seniors Championship Tournament Not Held A Tournament Not Held W SF QF QF 1R SF A Not Held W W F
Variant format tournaments
Six-red World Championship[nb 10] Tournament Not Held 2R W 2R NH 2R 2R RR A A A A 1R NH
Former ranking tournaments
Canadian Masters[nb 11] Non-Ranking Tournament Not Held Non-Ranking Event W Tournament Not Held
Classic Non-Ranking Event 2R 2R W F 3R 1R WD W 3R Tournament Not Held
Dubai Classic[nb 12] Tournament Not Held NR A 2R 2R 3R 2R 2R 2R 1R Tournament Not Held
Malta Grand Prix Tournament Not Held Non-Ranking Event 2R NR Tournament Not Held
Thailand Masters[nb 13] Tournament Not Held Non-Ranking Event Not Held 1R 2R 1R SF SF 1R 2R 2R 1R LQ 2R 1R 2R NR Not Held NR Tournament Not Held
British Open[nb 14] Non-Ranking Event 2R 1R W QF WD 3R SF W SF 3R 3R 2R 1R 1R 2R 1R F 2R 2R 1R 1R Tournament Not Held
Irish Masters Non-Ranking Event 1R 2R 2R NH NR Tournament Not Held
Northern Ireland Trophy[nb 15] Not Held NR Tournament Not Held NR LQ LQ 1R Tournament Not Held
Bahrain Championship Tournament Not Held LQ Tournament Not Held
Wuxi Classic[nb 16] Tournament Not Held Non-Ranking Event LQ 1R LQ Tournament Not Held
Australian Goldfields Open[nb 17] Non-Ranking Event NH SF Tournament Not Held Non-Ranking Tournament Not Held LQ WD LQ LQ LQ Tournament Not Held
Shanghai Masters Tournament Not Held LQ 1R LQ LQ LQ LQ LQ LQ LQ LQ LQ Non-Ranking NH
Paul Hunter Classic[nb 18] Tournament Not Held Pro-am Event Minor-Ranking Event QF 1R A NR NH
Indian Open Tournament Not Held LQ LQ NH 1R LQ LQ Not Held
China Open[nb 19] Tournament Not Held NR LQ 1R 2R 2R Not Held 2R 1R 2R LQ LQ LQ WR 1R LQ 3R LQ LQ 1R LQ LQ Not Held
Riga Masters[nb 20] Tournament Not Held Minor-Rank A 3R 1R LQ NH
International Championship Tournament Not Held LQ 1R 1R LQ LQ LQ 1R LQ NH
China Championship Tournament Not Held NR LQ LQ LQ NH
World Open[nb 21] Not Held F 2R 2R 3R W 2R QF 3R SF 1R W 3R 2R QF 1R SF 1R 2R SF 2R 2R 3R 2R 3R LQ LQ LQ LQ 1R LQ LQ 1R Not Held LQ LQ LQ LQ NH
Former non-ranking tournaments
Scottish Open[nb 7] Not Held LQ Ranking Event Not Held Ranking Event Tournament Not Held MR Not Held Ranking Event
Classic A A A 1R Ranking Event Tournament Not Held
Pontins Brean Sands Not Held RR Tournament Not Held
UK Championship A LQ SF QF SF Ranking Event
British Open[nb 14] A RR RR F RR Ranking Event Tournament Not Held
Tolly Cobbold Classic A A QF QF QF Tournament Not Held
Belgian Classic Tournament Not Held QF Tournament Not Held
Tokyo Masters Tournament Not Held SF Tournament Not Held
Canadian Masters[nb 11] 2R 2R Tournament Not Held QF QF F R Tournament Not Held
English Professional Championship NH A Not Held QF QF 2R 2R A Tournament Not Held
Dubai Classic[nb 12] Tournament Not Held QF Ranking Event Tournament Not Held
Matchroom Professional Championship Tournament Not Held A 2R SF Tournament Not Held
Carlsberg Challenge Tournament Not Held W W F A A Tournament Not Held
Hong Kong Gold Cup Tournament Not Held RR Tournament Not Held
International League Tournament Not Held F Tournament Not Held
New Zealand Masters Tournament Not Held W Not Held A A Tournament Not Held
Norwich Union Grand Prix Tournament Not Held F A QF Tournament Not Held
World Masters Tournament Not Held W Tournament Not Held
London Masters Tournament Not Held SF QF SF Tournament Not Held
European Masters League Tournament Not Held RR Tournament Not Held
Thailand Masters Tournament Not Held A W A A Not Held Ranking QF Ranking Event A Not Held A Tournament Not Held
Hong Kong Challenge[nb 22] Tournament Not Held A QF A QF SF W NH F SF Tournament Not Held
Indian Challenge Tournament Not Held QF Tournament Not Held
Belgian Challenge Tournament Not Held SF Tournament Not Held
Kent Classic[nb 23] Tournament Not Held F A NH A A NH QF Tournament Not Held
World Matchplay Tournament Not Held SF W W SF QF Tournament Not Held
European Challenge Tournament Not Held W QF QF Tournament Not Held
Tenball Tournament Not Held W Tournament Not Held
Belgian Masters Tournament Not Held F SF QF Not Held A Tournament Not Held
Malaysian Masters Tournament Not Held A NH W Tournament Not Held A Tournament Not Held
Australian Goldfields Open[nb 17] A A A A QF QF SF QF A NH R Tournament Not Held A A Tournament Not Held Ranking Event Tournament Not Held
Superstar International Tournament Not Held F Tournament Not Held
China Open[nb 19] Tournament Not Held F Ranking Event Not Held Ranking Event
Pontins Professional A A A A A A A A A A A A A A A A A A A W F Tournament Not Held
Malta Grand Prix Tournament Not Held A A A A QF R A Tournament Not Held
Champions Cup[nb 24] Tournament Not Held 1R QF 1R QF SF RR RR RR Tournament Not Held
Scottish Masters Not Held W QF QF F SF SF SF NH QF SF QF QF QF QF 1R 1R 1R QF 1R 1R 1R QF Tournament Not Held
Euro-Asia Masters Event 1 Tournament Not Held RR Tournament Not Held
Euro-Asia Masters Event 2 Tournament Not Held SF Tournament Not Held
Northern Ireland Trophy[nb 15] Not Held W Tournament Not Held LQ Ranking Event Tournament Not Held
Irish Masters A A A QF 1R W W QF QF QF SF SF QF QF SF QF 1R QF 1R SF QF 1R 1R Ranking Event NH RR Tournament Not Held
Pot Black A A A SF SF F W Tournament Not Held SF QF A Tournament Not Held QF A A Tournament Not Held
World Series Grand Final Tournament Not Held 2R Tournament Not Held
World Series Killarney Tournament Not Held F Tournament Not Held
World Series Prague Tournament Not Held W Tournament Not Held
Legends of Snooker Tournament Not Held QF Tournament Not Held
Power Snooker Tournament Not Held QF A Tournament Not Held
Premier League[nb 25] Tournament Not Held RR Not Held RR RR RR RR RR SF W SF SF RR RR F F RR RR SF RR RR RR RR F RR A A A RR A Tournament Not Held
Shoot-Out Tournament Not Held WD Tournament Not Held 1R 1R 1R 1R 2R A Ranking Event
Seniors Irish Masters Tournament Not Held W Not Held
Seniors 6-Red World Championship Tournament Not Held W Not Held
Seniors Masters Tournament Not Held A QF Not Held
UK Seniors Championship Tournament Not Held W QF F NH
Performance Table Legend
LQ lost in the qualifying draw #R lost in the early rounds of the tournament
(WR = Wildcard round, RR = Round robin)
QF lost in the quarter-finals
SF lost in the semi-finals F lost in the final W won the tournament
DNQ did not qualify for the tournament A did not participate in the tournament WD withdrew from the tournament
NH / Not Heldmeans an event was not held.
NR / Non-Ranking Eventmeans an event is/was no longer a ranking event.
R / Ranking Eventmeans an event is/was a ranking event.
RV / Ranking & Variant Format Eventmeans an event is/was a ranking & variant format event.
MR / Minor-Ranking Eventmeans an event is/was a minor-ranking event.
PA / Pro-am Eventmeans an event is/was a pro-am event.
VF / Variant Format Eventmeans an event is/was a variant format event.
  1. From the 2010/2011 season it shows the ranking at the beginning of the season.
  2. He was an amateur.
  3. New players on the Main Tour do not have a ranking.
  4. Players qualified through European Tour Order of Merit started the season without prize money ranking points.
  5. Players issued an invitational tour card began the season without ranking points.
  6. The event was also called the European Open (1988/1989 to 1996/1997 & 2001/2002 to 2003/2004), the Irish Open (1998/1999), and the Malta Cup (2004/2005 to 2007/20087)
  7. The event was also called the International Open (1981/1982 to 1984/1985, 1986/1987 to 1996/1997), Goya Matchroom Trophy (1985/1986) and Players Championship (2003/2004).
  8. The event was also called the German Open (1995/1996 to 1997/1998)
  9. The event was also called the Players Tour Championship Grand Finals (2010/2011 to 2012/2013) and Players Championship Grand Final (2013/2014 to 2015/2016)
  10. The event was also called the Six-red Snooker International (2008/2009) and the Six-red World Grand Prix (2009/2010)
  11. The tournament was also called the Canadian Open (1979/1980–1980/1981)
  12. The event was also called the Dubai Masters (1988/1989), Thailand Classic (1995/1996) and Asian Classic (1996/1997)
  13. The event was also called the Asian Open (1989/1990 to 1992/1993) and Thailand Open (1993/1994 to 1996/1997).
  14. The event was also called the British Gold Cup (1979/1980), Yamaha Organs Trophy (1980/1981) and International Masters (1981/1982 to 1983/1984).
  15. The tournament was also called the Northern Ireland Classic (1981/1982)
  16. The event was also called the Jiangsu Classic (2008/2009 to 2009/2010)
  17. The event was also called the Australian Masters (1979/1980 to 1987/1988 and 1995/1996), Hong Kong Open (1989/1990) and Australian Open (1994/1995)
  18. The event was also called the Grand Prix Fürth (2004/2005) and the Fürth German Open (2005/2006 to 2006/2007)
  19. The event was also called the China International (1997/1998 to 1998/1999)
  20. The event was called the Riga Open (2014/2015 to 2015/2016)
  21. The event was also called the Professional Players Tournament (1982/1983 to 1983/1984), Grand Prix (1984/1985 to 2000/2001 and 2004/2005 to 2009/2010), LG Cup (2001/2002 to 2003/2004), the World Open (2010/2011) and the Haikou World Open (2011/2012 to 2013/2014)
  22. The event was also called the Hong Kong Masters (1983/1984–1988/1989)
  23. The event was also called the Kent Cup (1986/1987–1987/1988 & 1989/1990–1990/1991)
  24. The event ran under a different name as the Charity Challenge (1994/1995–1998/1999)
  25. The event was also called the Professional Snooker League (1983/1984), Matchroom League (1986/1987 to 1991/1992) and the European League (1992/1993 to 1996/1997)

Career finals


[55]

Ranking finals: 24 (10 titles, 14 runners-up)

Legend
World Championship (0–6)
UK Championship (1–2)
Other (9–6)
Outcome No. Year Championship Opponent in the final Score
Runner-up 1. 1982 Professional Players Tournament Ray Reardon 5–10
Runner-up 2. 1984 World Snooker Championship Steve Davis 16–18
Runner-up 3. 1985 Matchroom Trophy Cliff Thorburn 10–12
Winner 1. 1986 The Classic Cliff Thorburn 13–12
Winner 2. 1986 Grand Prix Rex Williams 10–6
Runner-up 4. 1987 The Classic Steve Davis 12–13
Winner 3. 1987 British Open Neal Foulds 13–9
Runner-up 5. 1987 UK Championship Steve Davis 14–16
Runner-up 6. 1988 International Open (2) Steve Davis 6–12
Winner 4. 1988 Canadian Masters Steve Davis 9–4
Runner-up 7. 1990 World Snooker Championship (2) Stephen Hendry 12–18
Winner 5. 1991 The Classic (2) Stephen Hendry 10–4
Runner-up 8. 1991 World Snooker Championship (3) John Parrott 11–18
Runner-up 9. 1991 UK Championship (2) John Parrott 13–16
Winner 6. 1992 European Open Mark Johnston-Allen 9–3
Winner 7. 1992 British Open James Wattana 10–7
Runner-up 10. 1992 World Snooker Championship (4) Stephen Hendry 14–18
Winner 8. 1992 Grand Prix (2) Ken Doherty 10–9
Winner 9. 1992 UK Championship John Parrott 16–9
Runner-up 11. 1993 World Snooker Championship (5) Stephen Hendry 5–18
Runner-up 12. 1994 World Snooker Championship (6) Stephen Hendry 17–18
Runner-up 13. 2000 British Open Peter Ebdon 6–9
Runner-up 14. 2004 European Open Stephen Maguire 3–9
Winner 10. 2004 Players Championship Paul Hunter 9–7

Non-ranking finals: 45 (25 titles, 20 runners-up)

Legend
The Masters (1–1)
Premier League (1–3)
Other (23–16)
Outcome No. Year Championship Opponent in the final Score
Winner 1. 1981 Scottish Masters Cliff Thorburn 9–4
Winner 2. 1981 Northern Ireland Classic Steve Davis 11–9
Runner-up 1. 1983 International Masters Ray Reardon 6–9
Winner 3. 1984 The Masters Terry Griffiths 9–5
Winner 4. 1984 New Zealand Masters Kirk Stevens 5–3
Winner 5. 1984 Thailand Masters Terry Griffiths 4–3
Winner 6. 1984 Carlsberg Challenge Tony Knowles 9–7
Runner-up 2. 1984 Scottish Masters Steve Davis 4–9
Winner 7. 1985 Irish Masters Alex Higgins 9–5
Runner-up 3. 1985 Pot Black Doug Mountjoy 0–2
Winner 8. 1985 Carlsberg Challenge (2) Alex Higgins 8–3
Runner-up 4. 1986 The Masters Cliff Thorburn 5–9
Winner 9. 1986 Irish Masters (2) Willie Thorne 9–5
Winner 10. 1986 Malaysian Masters Dennis Taylor 2–1
Runner-up 5. 1986 Carlsberg Challenge Dennis Taylor 3–8
Winner 11. 1986 Pot Black Kirk Stevens 2–0
Runner-up 6. 1987 Kent Cup Willie Thorne 2–5
Runner-up 7. 1987 Canadian Masters Dennis Taylor 7–9
Winner 12. 1988 Hong Kong Masters Neal Foulds 6–3
Runner-up 8. 1988 Norwich Union Grand Prix Steve Davis 4–5
Winner 13. 1989 World Matchplay John Parrott 18–9
Runner-up 9. 1990 Hong Kong Challenge James Wattana 3–9
Runner-up 10. 1990 Belgian Masters John Parrott 6–9
Winner 14. 1990 World Matchplay (2) Stephen Hendry 18–9
Runner-up 11. 1990 Matchroom International League Tony Meo Round-Robin
Winner 15. 1991 World Masters Tony Drago 10–6
Winner 16. 1991 European Challenge Steve Davis 4–1
Winner 17. 1993 European League Alan McManus 10–7
Runner-up 12. 1997 Superstar International Ronnie O'Sullivan 3–5
Runner-up 13. 1997 China International Steve Davis 4–7
Runner-up 14. 1998 Premier League Ken Doherty 2–10
Runner-up 15. 1999 Premier League (2) John Higgins 4–9
Winner 18. 1999 Pontins Professional Matthew Stevens 9–5
Winner 19. 2000 Scottish Masters Qualifying Event Joe Swail 5–2
Runner-up 16. 2000 Pontins Professional Darren Morgan 2–9
Runner-up 17. 2006 Premier League (3) Ronnie O'Sullivan 0–7
Runner-up 18. 2009 World Series of Snooker Killarney Shaun Murphy 1–5
Winner 20. 2009 World Series of Snooker Prague Graeme Dott 5–3
Winner 21. 2010 World Seniors Championship Steve Davis 4–1
Winner 22. 2017 UK Seniors Championship Ken Doherty 4–2
Winner 23. 2019 Seniors Irish Masters Rodney Goggins 4–1
Winner 24. 2019 World Seniors Championship (2) Darren Morgan 5–3
Runner-up 19. 2019 UK Seniors Championship Michael Judge 2–4
Winner 25. 2020 World Seniors Championship (3) Ken Doherty 5–4
Runner-up 20. 2021 World Seniors Championship David Lilley 3–5

Variant finals: 3 (3 titles)

Outcome No. Year Championship Opponent in the final Score
Winner 1. 1995 Tenball Ronnie O'Sullivan 3–1
Winner 2. 2009 Six-red World Championship Barry Hawkins 8–6
Winner 3. 2019 Seniors 6-Red World Championship Aaron Canavan 4–2

Pro-am finals: 6 (1 title, 5 runners-up)

Outcome No. Year Championship Opponent in the final Score
Winner 1. 1978 Pontins Autumn Open Sid Hood 7–6
Runner-up 1. 1979 Pontins Spring Open Steve Davis 3–7
Runner-up 2. 2004 Swiss Open Ian McCulloch 1–5[56]
Runner-up 3. 2009 Paul Hunter Classic Shaun Murphy 0–4
Runner-up 4. 2010 Pink Ribbon Michael Holt 5–6
Runner-up 5. 2011 Cricket Club of India Open Invitational Stephen Lee 7–10[57]

Team finals: 7 (4 titles, 3 runners-up)

Outcome No. Year Championship Team/partner Opponent(s) in the final Score
Runner-up 1. 1982 World Team Classic  England  Canada 2–4
Runner-up 2. 1983 World Doubles Championship Tony Knowles Steve Davis
Tony Meo
2–10
Winner 1. 1984 World Doubles Championship Alex Higgins Cliff Thorburn
Willie Thorne
10–2
Winner 2. 1988 World Cup  England  Australia 9–7
Winner 3. 1989 World Cup (2)  England Rest of the world 9–8
Runner-up 3. 1991 World Masters Caroline Walch Steve Davis
Allison Fisher
3–6
Winner 4. 2000 Nations Cup  England  Wales 6–4

Amateur finals: 3 (3 titles)

Outcome No. Year Championship Opponent in the final Score
Winner 1. 1979 English Amateur Championship Dave Martin 13–10
Winner 2. 1980 IBSF World Amateur Championship Ron Atkins 11–2
Winner 3. 1980 Indian Amateur Championship Arvind Savur 9–7

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    Further reading