By Andrew Bushe
DUBLIN — Former world snooker champion Alex "Hurricane" Higgins, who is fighting throat cancer, plans to sue tobacco companies for causing his illness.
His solicitor, Peter McDonnell, who is already representing more than 200 clients taking cases against tobacco companies in the Irish courts, said the claim would be lodged in the near future.
McDonnell said he had been instructed to take proceedings against the Embassy and Benson and Hedges brands.
Belfast-born Higgins, 50, has undergone 44 radiation treatments and an operation to remove a cancerous growth.
Higgins was champion in 1972 and 1982. He now lives in a council house near Belfast and his cared for by his sisters.
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Speaking with a hoarse voice at a press conference in Dublin, Higgins said he had left school at 15 and didn’t know about the dangers of cigarette smoking.
He urged people to stop smoking and said he planned to beat his
"Get away from the weed," he said. "It is going to knock you out. It is going to kill you."