A peak viewing audience of 6.4m on BBC2 – the biggest snooker figure for years – watched the thrilling conclusion of the Betfred.com World Championship.
Footballers Wayne Rooney and Michael Owen and Labour party leader Ed Miliband were among those waxing lyrical on Twitter.
John Higgins’s dramatic 18-15 victory over the ferociously talented Judd Trump brought the curtain down on a memorable season in which the game was reinvigorated.
No wonder the man responsible, World Snooker chairman Barry Hearn, was all smiles as he stood on the Crucible floor where 30 years earlier he barrelled into Steve Davis after the first of Davis’s six world title triumphs.
Hearn has injected energy, ideas and fun back into snooker, a sport which was allowed to drift on without innovation for years.
He recognises in Trump the game’s new standard bearer: a young, attacking, exciting player who can bring a new fanbase to snooker
His run to the final is what captured the public’s imagination. His style of play is easy on the eye and he now has what it takes to be the game’s new superstar.
I will review the season in greater depth later in the week but the stand out highlights were the German Masters, played amid a wonderful atmosphere in the Berlin Tempodrom, the tightly contested UK Championship final and new innovations such as the World Open and Shootout, which brought something different to the circuit.
Players used to put their cues down for up to four months. The 2011/12 season starts for the main tour members next month.
This season was only the start of the Hearn-led resurgence of snooker. The next will see a prize money hike to around £6m with new tournaments in Thailand, Australia and Brazil.
The future is bright and there is every reason for optimism as we bask in the memory of another great World Championship to complete a fine season on and off the table.