Although there has been a World Snooker Championship since 1927 it has only existed in its current form since 1976 when the tobacco company Embassy became its main sponsor. This led to a permanent home at the Crucible the next year, and major television coverage by the BBC in 1977.
Championship legends include Steve Davis who dominated the sport during the 1980s, winning the title six times in nine years. His record is only exceeded by Stephen Hendry winning seven times during the 1990s. Stephen Hendry is the youngest ever World Champion, winning in 1990 at the age of 21. There have been only two non-British World Champions: the Canadian, Cliff Thorburn, and Irishman, Ken Doherty. The Championship was won most recently in 2003 by Mark Williams.