Thirty years in a sport is a mighty achievement. Jimmy White headed to qualification for Snookers most prestigious tournament in an event that would mark almost three decades since his inception into the sport.
Yet sadly the special landmark for his career longevity was cut destructively short by a 10-3 thrashing by former World Champion Ken Doherty. The ‘whirlwind’ as was widely predicted could not reproduce scenes similar to his early career triumphs, putting an end to any optimistic ideas in the aftermath of his Australian outback adventure.
The statistics involved in his lengthy career do justly read well. Six World Championship finals and two hundred and forty-three century breaks have accompanied his accomplishment of being one of only six players to claim the maximum 147 break at the Crucible arena.
And despite his six out of six defeats at the World Championship event, often in a devastatingly close fashion, his enticing style of play and crowd pleasing attitude garnered him many devoted fans.
Yet the enduring heartbreak of another failed attempt at a recovery must now be persuading Jimmy to quit the sport once and for all. In appearing to lack the ability to reintroduce the talents that influenced his early career many will wonder how long it will be before Jimmy finally gives up chasing the dream.
He is now seemingly in a deep decline, edging excruciatingly close to losing his top sixty-four ranking. It is now also six years since his last ranking victory, making it unlikely that the icon can elevate his status back to its former glories.
So as the rare left handed superstar looks unlikely to go out on a high maybe it would be wise to gift the young guns close to him in rankings a chance to stamp their names into the history books.
We know after all that the whirlwind has inspired many emerging talents into attempting to become the epitome of greatness. You would find it easy to locate a young player who does not count White as a player that they seek to emulate.
This is rightfully so and can be Jimmy’s lasting legacy in the next three decades to come.