Ronnie booked his place in the Final of the Welsh Open 2016, beating Joe Perry by 6-3. Neil Robertson awaits…
It only takes a look at the scores and statistics to understand that this was a very high quality match. Joe Perry certainly didn’t disgrace himself: he was very solid, especially in the balls, and it was probably Ronnie’s superior safety that was the key to the victory.
The match didn’t start in the best way actually. Technical problems slightly delayed the start of the match. The first frame went extremely scrappy and despite winning it with a good 41 clearance, Ronnie didn’t look too happy. Then a power cut forced an unschedule “interval”, players and referee going back backstage. After about ten minutes, play resumed and the returning Ronnie looked quite moody. Joe then immediately potted a great long red from Ronnie’s break-off and made a fantastic 139 … at that stage, I will admit to it, I feared the worse.
But, no, as he had all week, Ronnie stayed calm, played him own game and responded with a 124 in the next frame. Joe made it 2-2 with a great 92. It was MSI time.
After the MSI Ronnie started to really dominate the match, 101, 94 and 88 brought him one frame away from victory. Joe wasn’t going to lie down and won the next aided by a 56 but that was as good as it got for him. Ronnie sealed the match in the ninth with an excellent 78, after Joe lost position at 24.
You can watch the full match (again) here thanks to Rocket Ronnie
Ronnie gave a good press conference
“The matches are getting harder but I felt I scored well tonight,” said world number five O’Sullivan, who lost to Robertson at the 2010 World Open in their only previous final. “I was nervous because I’m playing well and I want to stay in the tournament. At the Masters I wasn’t nervous at all because I expected to lose. This week I’ve played six unbelievable matches and I’m waiting for the bubble to burst.
“In the past three or four years I have been expressing myself and produced the same type of snooker I played when I was 14 or 15. Now it’s about my legacy and leaving a mark on the game. Not so much in terms of titles, but in the way that I play. I like to think I’ve played snooker that no one else has.
“Neil is like RoboCop. I watched him throughout the UK Championship and he never showed any emotion. He’s like Steve Davis or Stephen Hendry in that respect. I’m really looking forward to tomorrow.” (source Worldsnooker)
He also took the opportunity to announce new exhibitions, in Romania and China, both in his press conference and on twitter shortly afterwards.
Thanks for all your support this week. Amazing fans. Coming to Romania with Adrian Theiss on 2/3 April and also 6 city tour of China in May