Ronnie beat Mark Selby by a convincing 5-1 in the quarter finals at the Welsh Open 2016 in Cardiff.
Ronnie lost the first frame of the match. A not so good break-off from Ronnie allowed Mark to sink a great long red and make a winning break from there. Ronnie came back to the table, needing snookers, but promptly missed a black and Mark finished the job. An excellent 93 in the next got Ronnie settled. In frame three Mark missed a long red and, from there, Ronnie embarked in a 147 attempt but he missed the 8th black. He was lucky though that the black ran safe. There were more than enough points on the table but Mark was forced to play mostly with the blue and found himself 63-56 ahead with only the black remaining. It was Ronnie who won the black ball battle with a fantastic long pot. After that it was one way traffic … and a breakbuilding masterclass. Indeed Mark scored just three points in the last three frames as Ronnie scored breaks of 61, 75 and 132.
Here is a bit of stat attack (thanks Steve Kent on twitter)
Up to now in the tournament, Ronnie has played 21 frames, won 18, lost 3, made 18 breaks over 50, including 7 centuries. Not too shabby.
A “mischievous” Ronnie is interviewed after the match
Going by what transpired on twitter, a “tongue in cheek” Ronnie claimed that this tournament is good practice for his numerous coming exhibitions. He insisted that at 40, he wants to entertain and admitted that he went for the 147 in frame three following Paddy Power’s offer to pay him 61000£ if he manages to do one.
“I just went out there and went for my shots,” said O’Sullivan. “I’ve got a chance (of the title), it would be ridiculous to say otherwise, but Neil Robertson is the all round professional now. He’s like Steve Davis was in the eighties and Hendry was in the nineties: very disciplined and wanting to set a benchmark as far as his legacy. You’ve got to play out of your skin to beat him.” (source Worldsnooker)
Big thanks again to Tai Chengzhe for these pictures
And here is the full match. Enjoy!
And Ronnie post-match interview (BBC)