Ronnie reached the final of the Champion of Champion for the fourth time, in four participations, by beating Anthony Hamilton by 6-2, from 2-0 down. He also made his 900th competitive century in frame 5 of the match. The match was played in very good spirit. When Anthony made a bizarre foul whilst breaking off, Ronnie very sportively offered him the opportunity to break off again, both were all smiles during the incident. And when Ronnie knocked in century n° 900, Anthony came to him to congratulate him. Ronnie admitted afterwards that he felt tense at the start of the match. They know each other, practice together and that doesn’t make it easier, especially for Ronnie who had all the weight of expectations on his shoulders.
Ronnie had prepared seriously for the match … lauding the food on twitter as well!
O’SULLIVAN REACHES FOURTH 188BET CHAMPION OF CHAMPIONS FINAL
Ronnie O’Sullivan 6–2 Anthony Hamilton
69-71 (O’Sullivan 57), 52-68, 128-0 (O’Sullivan 124), 88-0 (O’Sullivan 74), 109-5 (O’Sullivan 109), 102-6 (O’Sullivan 52), 75-37 (O’Sullivan 68), 78-16 (O’Sullivan 78)
Ronnie O’Sullivan recorded his 900th career century break en-route to reaching the 188BET Champion of Champions final for a fourth time with a 6-2 semi-final success over Anthony Hamilton at the Ricoh Arena in Coventry.
The only time O’Sullivan hasn’t made the final of this tournament was in 2015, when he did not participate, and his only defeat here was in last season’s showpiece against John Higgins.
Having beaten Neil Robertson and Higgins in the group stage, O’Sullivan found himself 2-0 down in the early stages of his semi-final as Hamilton twice took advantage of ‘The Rocket’ accidentally knocking in a colour. O’Sullivan hit back in the third with a 124, his 899th career century and drew level in time for the mid-session interval with a 74.
When the players returned O’Sullivan marked his latest career milestone with a 109 break to take the lead for the first time in the match, and he didn’t look back from there. A 68 break in the seventh put him one frame from the final, and
“It will be my fourth final in four visits, two wins and one loss last year,” said O’Sullivan. “Of course it would be nice to win, but I just want to enjoy it. I think I play best when I am relaxed and sometimes you get a bit tense and tight out there and you lose the flow, so the more relaxed you are the stronger your flow.
“To reach 900 centuries is a big milestone and the crowd enjoyed it. I will be trying to get to the 1,000 as quickly as possible.
“Luca and Shaun Murphy are both fantastic players and I would pay to watch that game tomorrow because they are both great, attacking players.
“I will go home tonight, have a day at home, come back tomorrow night and on Sunday go out and have faith in my own game and hopefully come in and have spells where I have spells where I am strong in the match and try and dominate, and when I am not so strong try and limit the damage.”
O’Sullivan will face either Shaun Murphy or Luca Brecel in Sunday’s best-of-19 final, with his opponent to be determined on Saturday evening.
Broadcast on ITV4 in the UK and on networks around the world, the 188BET Champion of Champions carries a £370,000 prize fund with the winner taking home £100,000.
Videos of interest:
Ronnie vs Anthony Hamilton SF preview (including part 2 of Ronnie’s interview with Stephen Hendry:
Ronnie vs Anthony SF – the match:
Ronnie vs Anthony Hamilton SF review with Ronnie in the studio:
The n° 900:
Matchroom Multi Sport are delighted to announce a new three-year agreement which will see snooker’s prestigious Champion of Champions remain at Ricoh Arena, Coventry until 2020 with tickets for 2018 on sale on Monday, November 13 2017.
Since its inaugural running in 2013, the Champion of Champions has gone from strength to strength with players and fans united in seeing the tournament as one of the highlights of the snooker calendar.
Broadcast live on ITV4 and on networks around the world, the Champion of Champions brings together 16 players, all World Snooker Tour winners over the previous 12 months, and has been won by some of the sport’s biggest names – Ronnie O’Sullivan (2013, 2014), Neil Robertson (2015) and John Higgins (2016).
The 2018 Champion of Champions will be staged from Monday, November 5 until Sunday, November 11.
Matchroom Sport Chairman Barry Hearn commented: “The Ricoh Arena is a great venue for snooker and I am thrilled that our excellent relationship with the venue will continue for at least a further three years.
“Since the first Champion of Champions in 2013 we have seen a year-on-year rise in attendance as the tournament has cemented itself as one of the major events of the snooker calendar. The people of Coventry come out in force to support snooker’s best players every November and we’re pleased they will be able to continue to do so.
“With record crowds, record TV numbers and 16 of the very best players in the world, I have no doubt that the Champion of Champions will continue to be a must-see. It’s a tournament all players are desperate to compete in and we look forward to seeing the best of the best at the Ricoh Arena for a further three years.”
Stuart Cain, commercial director for Wasps and the Ricoh Arena, added: “The growing success of Champion of Champions is testament to the Ricoh Arena’s ability of being able to host world-class sporting events, and we are delighted to have secured the tournament for the next three years.
“To have 16 of the world’s best snooker players performing on our doorstep is something both the Ricoh Arena and the wider region should be proud of.”
Tickets for the 2018 Champion of Champions will go on sale this Monday, November 13 from www.championofchampionssnooker.co.uk