Snooker champ reveals cancer diagnosis

Double World Championship finalist Ali Carter has been diagnosed with testicular cancer, World Snooker confirmed Monday.

The governing body said the 33-year-old Carter, who found out about his latest illness last week, would undergo surgery on Tuesday.

This was the latest health scare for Carter, who in 2003 was diagnosed with Crohn's disease, a long-term condition that causes inflammation of the lining of the digestive system.

However, the Englishman, from Essex, east of London, posted an upbeat message on his Twitter page Monday saying: "Thank you to everyone for their support! Just want to get through this week then I will concentrate on getting better. Love you all!"

Carter, nicknamed 'the Captain' on account of holding an airplane pilot's license, lost both his world finals to Ronnie O'Sullivan, in 2008 and 2012.

A popular figure on the snooker circuit, it was not long before Carter was receiving messages of support from fellow players including six-times losing World finalist Jimmy White, himself a testicular cancer survivor.

"Sending my love to 㠔eCaptain147 I know you've got the strength to beat it mate," White said.

Meanwhile reigning UK and Masters champion Mark Selby, also via Twitter, said: "Just heard the devastating news about Ali Carter. I cannot believe this, he is a great lad and a great snooker player, he does not deserve this.

"I want to wish him all the best with his treatment, he is a strong person and he will come through this. Keep strong buddy, my thoughts are with you and your family at this tough time."

When Carter, currently ranked 15th in the world, next plays a major tournament remains to be seen but World Snooker chairman Barry Hearn said he hoped it would not be too long before he was back on the baize.

"Ali has shown in his battle against Crohn's disease that he is a fighter," Hearn said in a statement. "We hope for a positive outcome and everyone in snooker is 100 percent behind him.

"We look forward to seeing him back on the circuit soon."

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