Graham Miles

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Graham Miles
Born (1941-05-11)11 May 1941
Birmingham, England
Died 12 October 2014(2014-10-12) (aged 73)
Sport country  England
Professional 1971–1994
Highest ranking 5 (1976/77)
Career winnings £80,645[1]
Highest break 139 (1978 UK Championship)
Century breaks 16
Best ranking finish Runner-up (1974 World Championship)
Tournament wins
Non-ranking 3

Graham Miles (11 May 1941 – 12 October 2014) was an English snooker player.[2]

Career

Miles turned professional in 1971. He first gained recognition in 1974, when he reached the final of the World Championship. Although he lost 22–12 to Ray Reardon, this turned out to be the highlight of his career. He won Pot Black in 1974 (after entering as a late replacement for Fred Davis, who withdrew because of illness), and again in 1975, but had little subsequent success. Other notable moments in Miles's career included reaching the final of the 1976 Masters, where he again lost to Reardon.

The 1978/9 season saw something of a purple patch for Miles. At the UK Championship he defeated Rex Williams 9-8 and then hammered Willie Thorne 9-1, which included what was then a championship record break of 139 in the last frame. However, he was then dispatched 9-1 by eventual winner Doug Mountjoy.[3]

This form continued in January 1979, when he reached the final of the Holsten Lager International by defeating John Pulman, Dennis Taylor and Alex Higgins. He led John Spencer 7-6 in the final, having made a break of 107, but eventually lost 11-7 to take £2000 as runner-up.[4]

Miles led defending champion Ray Reardon 3-0 and 5-3 in the first round of the 1979 World Championship, but he came down with flu and lost 13-8.[5] Straight after this, Miles defeated Doug Mountjoy 4-3 and Perrie Mans 5-2 in the group stages of the Pontins Professional Event. Miles then beat Steve Davis 4-0 in the semi-final, but lost 8-4 in the final to Doug Mountjoy.[6]

At the inaugural World Team Cup, Miles represented England along with John Spencer and Fred Davis, where they reached the final only to be beaten 14-3 by Wales.[7] His last major title was the Tolly Cobbold Classic in 1981, when he beat Cliff Thorburn 5–1 in Ipswich. During the 1980s he slid down the rankings, and 1984 saw his last appearance at the World Championship.

Miles was left-eyed and had a large chin, so he had one of the most distinctive styles in snooker, lining up his left eye with the cue. The cue ran beneath his left ear, his chin hanging far over his cue; as he struck the cue ball, the cue brushed his left cheek.

Personal life

After retiring from the game in 1992, he ran two snooker clubs at Sandwell, West Midlands,[8] and one in Crewe, Cheshire. He came out of retirement to play at the Seniors Pot Black competition in 1997.

Miles died on 12 October 2014, aged 73.[9]

References

  1. ^ http://cuetracker.net/Players/Graham-Miles/Career-Total-Statistics
  2. ^ Paul Suart. "Birmingham snooker star Graham Miles reveals truth about Alex Higgins.". Birminghammail.net. Retrieved 15 October 2014. 
  3. ^ Everton, Clive (Ed.) Snooker Scene, January 1978, pp23-27.
  4. ^ Everton Clive (Ed.) Snooker Scene, February 1979, pp13-15.
  5. ^ Everton, Clive (Ed.) Snooker Scene, June 1979, p13.
  6. ^ Everton, Clive (Ed.) Snooker Scene, June 1979, p21.
  7. ^ Everton, Clive (Ed.) Snooker Scene, December 1979, pp5-9.
  8. ^ Paul Suart. "Birmingham snooker pundit pays tribute to 'Hurricane' Higgins.". Birminghammail.net. Retrieved 15 October 2014. 
  9. ^ "BBC Sport - Graham Miles: Former World Snooker finalist dies aged 73". BBC Sport. Retrieved 15 October 2014. 
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