O’Sullivan Tickled Pink

Ronnie O’Sullivan beat Matthew Stevens 4-2 to win the seventh Players Tour Championship event of the season in Gloucester.

The ‘Rocket’ was in a buoyant mood throughout the entire weekend and when he is content with himself he usually emerges victorious.

Nobody forced the former world champion into a deciding frame in any of his seven encounters and the title never really looked in doubt.

O’Sullivan ousted Stephen Maguire at the start of the day in the fourth round before triumphing over China’s Liu Chuang and countryman Michael White.

Stevens enjoyed successes over Ali Carter, Shaun Murphy and a whitewash over Jimmy Robertson but could not prevent O’Sullivan from picking up his second PTC crown of the season – the first player to achieve the feat.

In the final, the 35 year-old raced into a 2-0 lead, helped by a break of 95 in the opener, before Stevens got his name on the scoreboard following a scrappy third frame.

A 53 from the former world number one brought O’Sullivan to within one of victory and, despite a classy 127 from his opponent, he was not to be denied and wrapped up the victory with a 88 in the last.

It is an important win for O’Sullivan who was provisionally outside the Top 16 in the world before the event.

However, everybody knows that when Ronnie brings anywhere near his A-game to a tournament he will be very difficult to beat and he will surely be soon turning his focus towards the UK Championship in December.

It was a good ending to a successful Kay Suzanne Memorial Trophy that helped raise awareness for breast cancer by going pink.

Players and referees were provided with pink polo shirts to wear instead of the usual waistcoat and bow-tie.

It was fitting both that the last day landed on the fifth anniversary of the untimely death of snooker star Paul Hunter and that Stevens, Hunter’s best friend and one of the pallbearers at the funeral, contested the final.

Next week the players have a reprieve for a change but the action will return in a fortnight when PTC 8 crosses the Irish Sea to Killarney.

The full draw and results can be viewed by clicking here.

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