Whilst others are getting ready for the last event before the Crucible, Ronnie has been busy cooking, planning a break and Crucible practice and, finally, acknowledging his own status in the sport.
Ronnie has shared those images on social media, hinting at a big announcement. If the tags accompanying the images are anything to go by, this is likely to be related to the imminent publication of his book with Rhiannon Lambert “Top of your game”.
According to “The Daily Star”, Ronnie’s plans ahead of the Crucible are to chill out with a mate, and go for a bit of fresh air and sailing, before heading to Sheffield for his preparation and practice ahead of the Crucible. Taking a break isn’t a bad idea IMO. The Tour Championship was pretty intense, the World Championship will be long and demanding. Being fresh heading to the Crucible might prove crucially important.
O’Sullivan: Hard to argue I’m not greatest of all time
Ronnie O’Sullivan has admitted for the first time he has a right to be called snooker’s GOAT as his golden 27-year career continues to glitter.
O’Sullivan holds every major record in the sport in the modern era, but continues to be two adrift of the retired Stephen Hendry’s haul of seven world titles ahead of his latest tilt at a sixth world crown next month.
His achievements include:
- Being the youngest winner of a ranking event aged 17 at the 1993 UK Championship
- Winning a record 19 triple crown events including seven UK titles and seven Masters
- Becoming the first man to break the 1000 mark in career centuries
- Making 15 competitive 147 breaks, more than any other player
But the Essex man believes it is not only the numbers that validate his claim to be called snooker’s greatest of all time after his 13-11 win over 2010 world champion Neil Robertson in last weekend’s Tour Championship final.
At the age of 43, O’Sullivan is snooker’s oldest world number one since the 50-year-old six-times world champion Ray Reardon in 1983 after his title success in Llandudno.
He has drawn level on 36 ranking event titles with Hendry, a number that could be passed if he wins the World Championship.
The five-times world champion believes style, commitment and longevity since he turned professional in 1992 put him above his rivals in the debate about who is the green baize’s best.
When asked if he thought he was the greatest, O’Sullivan – winner of the world championship in 2001, 2004, 2008, 2012 and 2013 – told Eurosport: “It’s hard to argue against that in many ways, my record speaks for itself. I have every record barring the seven world titles.
“I think the thing for me is that I’ve done it in an aggressive, attacking and flamboyant way if you like, and to get results playing that style is never easy.
“A lot of players aim to stall you, and freeze the game up, and it’s a testament to your own ability to not allow that to happen, and when I’m playing well that never happens because I’m able to punch holes through them really quickly and their game plan goes out the window. “
“If I’m not playing well and clearing up in one visit and dominating the table, their confidence grows and find that’s the best way to beat me.
“But over the 25 years, I’ve pretty much had an answer for any opponent. It’s nice, I can reflect on my career now and be satisfied with it in many ways.”
“Every season there seems to be someone that’s playing well, but I seem to have always been there. It’s Mark Selby, then Neil Robertson, Judd Trump then John Higgins, Mark Williams but I always seem to be always there, so I’m happy I’ve always been able to have consistency at the highest level.”
Robertson compared O’Sullivan to Roger Federer in tennis after losing to O’Sullivan after seeing him end Selby’s four-year reign as number one despite playing in only seven ranking events this season.
“It’s nice when it comes from your peers and they’re probably the most important ones. When it comes from someone like Neil or Stephen Hendry or John Higgins it means so much more,” said O’Sullivan.
“But you have to go by your records, and being the most successful player in snooker now, it’s debatable whether it’s me or Hendry. He’s had seven world titles, whereas I only have five, but I seem to have every other record. ”
“It’s a bit like saying is (Lionel) Messi really the best player ever because he hasn’t won the World Cup? You can go on and on with that argument.
“For me Messi is the greatest player we’ve ever seen. By not winning the World Cup doesn’t change my opinion of him being the best.
“It’s difficult to satisfy some people, but sometimes it’s just nice to have your hat thrown in and be at the table in that discussion.”
WORLD SNOOKER CHAMPIONSHIP ON EUROSPORT
THE MOST COMPREHENSIVE COVERAGE
World Snooker Championship to be broadcast exclusively in 65 COUNTRIES and territories in Europe, Asia and North Africa (+UK non-exclusive)
Every minute of the main tournament broadcast exclusively LIVE* on Eurosport and Eurosport Player – equating to 150 HOURS of coverage
Exclusive coverage of the qualifying tournament on Eurosport Player – in total Eurosport will screen 300 HOURS of world-class snooker in April and May
WATCH ANYWHERE, ANYTIME – all coverage simulcast on the Eurosport Player
KEY DATES FOR THE DIARY
Qualification tournament – ONLY ON EUROSPORT PLAYER
Saturday 20 April – Day 1 of the main tournament from the 2019 World Snooker Championship
Saturday 27 April – Second round begins
Tuesday 30 April – Quarter-Finals begin
Thursday 2 May – Semi-Finals begin
Monday 6 May – The final of the 2019 World Snooker Championship concludes
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