Mark Williams fought off a stunning comeback from John Higgins to claim his third world snooker crown and become at 43 the oldest champion since ray Reardon 40 years ago.

The Welshman won a gripping final 18-16 frames to add to his titles in 2000 and 2003.

Higgins, 42 and seeking a fifth title, fought back from a seven-frame deficit to draw level at 15-15, but Williams held on to take the sport’s showcase event 71-0 in the 34th frame.

The Welshman won the title for the first time in 15 years and adds to his crowns from 2000 and 2003.