Ronnie’s run in the 2022 Scottish Open came to an end at the hands of an excellent Gary Wilson yesterday evening. Here are the scores:
It’s another early exit in a ranking event for Ronnie, which is a shame, but truth to be said, it was a very good match and Gary was the better player. Ronnie himself didn’t play badly. Both were above 90% pot success. This was probably as good as Ronnie has played in ranking events all season, he applied himself, his safety was very good but his long potting remains inconsistent.
The evening saw the last 32 get underway and Gary Wilson scored a significant first ever win over World Champion Ronnie O’Sullivan, prevailing by a 4-3 scoreline.
Wilson had come up short in all of his prior meetings with the Rocket, suffering losses at German Masters, World Championship and Shanghai Masters in 2017.
Wallsend’s Wilson crafted breaks of 72 and 82 during the tie, before a match winning 73 in the decider. Next up he faces either Yan Bingtao or Hossein Vafaei for a place in the quarter-finals.
“Of pretty much all of the top players on the tour, Ronnie O’Sullivan and Mark Williams were the only two I haven’t beaten before. I think there’s only Mark left now. It’s nice, you don’t want to keep playing someone and not winning. It is good to tick that one off and get a result,” said 37-year-old Wilson.
“I don’t ever really feel comfortable with my game generally. It is hard to block out when you feel that way. On the very rare occasion I feel confident and good about my game it doesn’t matter who I’m playing.”
No quotes from Ronnie by WST, but Hector Nunns spoke to him:
Ronnie O’Sullivan thankful he climbed “Arthur’s a***” as he crashes out of Scottish Open
Ronnie O’Sullivan crashed out of the Scottish Open with a shock defeat to Tyneside Terror Gary Wilson – but at least enjoyed some of the sights Edinburgh had to offer
Ronnie O’Sullivan was thankful he was able to climb ‘Arthur’s a***’ after crashing out of the Scottish Open.
The world No.1 was edged out 4-3 by Geordie Gary Wilson in a thriller at the Meadowbank Sports Centre in Edinburgh. Tyneside Terror Wilson, a huge underdog, held his nerve with a brilliant break of 73 in a tense deciding frame to seal his first ever victory over the Rocket.
Wilson looked in complete control in the decider – with O’Sullivan suffering a surprise early exit before Thursday’s last 16. O’Sullivan has won two prestigious invitational events at the Hong Kong Masters and the Champion of Champions this year, but his wait for his first ranking title of the season goes on.
And the unflustered 46-year-old, an avid runner, claimed he had the ‘amazing’ consolation of climbing Arthur’s seat – the ancient volcano and famous peak of a group of hills in the Scottish capital that he mistakenly referred to as ‘Arthur’s a***’.
“Gary was the better player tonight, he just played better than me – and so that’s what the snooker gods dished out,” O’Sullivan admitted. “He deserved to win, and it is as simple as that. Snooker can be very fickle and maybe this can be the start of something for Gary, and he can go deep in the draw.
“I am pretty neutral about winning and losing these days, that doesn’t change. I will stay here working with Eurosport until maybe late Sunday and try and get home for my birthday on Monday. At least I got to run up Arthur’s Seat, or Arthur’s a*** or whatever it’s called while I was here. That was amazing.”
Once again the words “shock defeat” are being used, but this was no shock at all. Gary Wilson is inconsistent, but when he’s playing well, he’s playing really well. Alan McManus in the ES studio was full of praise for his performance yesterday. He has been a ranking finalist twice, most recently, last season at the 2021 British Open, and he’s reached the one table setup at the Crucible. What he said about never feeling comfortable probably explains his lack of consistency. He’s also spoken about mental health issues in the past.
As for the race to the 2023 World Grand Prix, Ronnie is currently ranked 15, but that will probably change as the week goes on. However with a 10000 points cushion on the current 32d in the list, he is safe. He will however need results at the 2022 English Open and the 2023 World Grand Prix to secure his spot in the Players Championship, especially as he won’t play in Berlin and won’t play in the 2023 Shoot-out either as he currently has an exhibition scheduled that week.