Legendary snooker star Willie Thorne has been diagnosed with leukaemia with the 66-year-old set to start chemotherapy immediately.
Thorne, who is best known for his commentary and stint on series five of Strictly Come Dancing, announced the news on Twitter.
Thorne won just one ranking title during his 26-year career, but has been a regular on BBC’s commentary in recent years.
Thorne tweeted: “I realise everybody is having a tough time mines just got worse. I’ve been diagnosed with leukaemia.
“I’m devastated. Start chemotherapy tomorrow. I’m in Spain where the health care is hopefully second to none.
“Love to you all. Willie x”
And many were quick to send the two-time world championship quarter-finalist their wishes.
Sally Gunnell posted: “Stay strong x”. And Thorne replied: “Thanks Sally always been a fan can’t stop crying at the mo x”
Thorne reached a career high ranking of No 7 during his days as a professional, but suffered problems away from the table.
His house was repossessed last year just days after Thorne split from his wife of 24 years.
Thorne has been battling prostate cancer, saying in 2015: “I feel numb with everything that has gone on. But I am determined to summon the strength and fight.
“The cancer is under ‘active surveillance’. I’ve had an MRI scan on my prostate and I have to go into hospital again for another biopsy in two weeks.
“I’m scared because I’ve spent two years living a lie with the gambling, depression and debts…
“I do wonder if this has been brought on by the stress.
“I have the support of my family. We have not spoken about this too much so far because we don’t know yet the full picture.
“When we get the next results back we will. But doctors are hopeful that we’ve caught this early enough.”
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