Wednesday, 27 April 2011

A word about O'Sullivan..

It's no surprise that on the night when Ronnie O'Sullivan was eliminated from this year's World Championship, this was what a lot of fans wanted to talk about.

His 13-10 quarter-final defeat to John Higgins has got everyone talking. So I gathered it probably warranted a blog of its own.

Some people will argue it's no bigger news for O'Sullivan to be knocked out over any of the other top players. But, like it or not, it's bigger news. His fans go wild. It causes days of debate.

But tonight, I think it's time to break the mould. Rather than focus on where it went wrong for O'Sullivan, I want to talk about where it went right.

O'Sullivan arrived at the Crucible so drastically out of form that he almost didn't even bother playing.

He ended it having rekindled his want to play snooker, and more importantly, his focus on the table. The Rocket recorded wins against Dominic Dale and Shaun Murphy to advance to the last eight, in which time he offered glimpses of his imperious breaking building skills.

At times, his long-potting let him down. But he was hungry and competitive for the first in a very long time.

The problem with O'Sullivan has always been his battle to find perfection. No matter how good you are, you can never play a perfect tournament of snooker. That's why despite showing vast improvements in form at this year's World Championship, Ronnie still casted a damning verdict of his own performance in Sheffield.

In my opinion, he played a lot better than he gave himself credit for.

If he'd beaten Higgins tonight, he could have gone on to win the world title. And defeating Higgins was definitely possible if he'd been a tad more ruthless in the second session.

This isn't to say that Ronnie is wrong. He knows his game better than anyone else. He's right. He could have played much better. But on the same note, he was still playing well enough to trouble every top player.

That's the worrying part for his professional colleagues. That even so far below his best, he's still competitive

Hopefully, this is the beginning of O'Sullivan's resurgence on the baize. If it is, I'm sure he'll be back winning titles again soon. Because if he applies himself, his form will take care of itself.

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