Ronnie O'Sullivan
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Ronnie O’Sullivan – ‘The toughest survive’

Ronnie O’Sullivan reached the second round of the 2024 World Snooker Championship with a resounding 10-1 triumph over Jackson Page on Thursday.

The world number one began his bid to capture a record-breaking eighth world crown of the modern era with a comprehensive display.

O’Sullivan wasn’t at his free-flowing best but didn’t need to be as he comfortably dispatched of the young Welshman.

The 48 year-old will take on Ryan Day in the last 16 on Sunday and Monday in Sheffield.

Already a five-time winner during the 2023/24 snooker season, the Rocket seems to possess a focus that will be required to get the job done at the Crucible this year.

“It was alright. I’m happy, I enjoyed it. I cued okay for a change,” Ronnie O’Sullivan said in the Eurosport studio.

“If my game is good, I’m happy. If my game is not good, like it has been for a long time, I’m a miserable person.”

“I’m never, ever going to try and cure it, because I’ve tried. It is what it is, just try and get your game right.

“Be a bit more satisfied and content. But listen, I put pressure on myself. I don’t come here to make the numbers up.

“I come here to try and win. The margins are a lot less, so maybe I do put myself under a bit of pressure.

“But that’s just the way I’ve been born or whatever’s been instilled in me. I can’t help that, I just have to manage it.

“I feel like I’m playing and cueing half decent, which is good.”

There has been a lot of speculation surrounding the Crucible Theatre and Sheffield remaining as the host city for the World Championship in the future.

O’Sullivan has already stated that he would like to see the sport’s most prestigious event move in the future.

But the reigning UK and Masters champion recognises the effect the Crucible can have over a player, and how important it is to handle the pressure at the famous venue when mounting a challenge for world glory.

“It’s a hard venue. No matter how many times you come here, it finds you out,” Ronnie O’Sullivan continued.

“You get great players that come here who can never win it, because there’s a lot of pressure out there.”

“That’s what the Crucible can bring to it. It’s a tough venue to play well in sometimes.

“Every World Championship I’ve won, I don’t think anyone has got within three or four frames of me.

“I was looking back at it the other day, and sometimes you think how did I win that?

“But I look back and think, nobody really got near me. So just let the tournament unravel. It goes how it goes.

“We’ve all got to play the same amount of matches, the same amount of frames. The toughest survive.

“If that happens to be me at the end of the week, great. If it doesn’t – last year it was Luca – but that’s what I’m saying, it never gets easier any year.

“It’s still who has got the mental capacity to handle the pressure. You’re not going to have it all your own way.

“It’s the guys that don’t like that situation who don’t end up doing that well here.

“You’ve got to enjoy that, you’ve got to embrace it. See it as a pleasure, although you don’t feel it out there when you’ve got it on you.

“But that’s what you’ve got to do. Dig deep and find a way to play well under pressure, that’s the important thing.”

The first round of the 2024 World Snooker Championship concludes on Thursday evening when John Higgins returns for his second session with Jamie Jones leading 5-4.

2024 World Snooker Championship Draw

Round 1 (bo19)

Luca Brecel (1) 9-10 David Gilbert
Robert Milkins (16) 10-9 Pang Junxu
Ali Carter (9) 7-10 Stephen Maguire
Shaun Murphy (8) 10-5 Lyu Haotian

Mark Selby (5) 6-10 Joe O’Connor
Kyren Wilson (12) 10-1 Dominic Dale
John Higgins (13) 10-6 Jamie Jones
Mark Allen (4) 10-6 Robbie Williams

Judd Trump (3) 10-5 Hossein Vafaei
Tom Ford (14) 10-6 Ricky Walden
Zhang Anda (11) 4-10 Jak Jones
Mark Williams (6) 9-10 Si Jiahui

Ding Junhui (7) 9-10 Jack Lisowski
Gary Wilson (10) 5-10 Stuart Bingham
Barry Hawkins (15) 8-10 Ryan Day
Ronnie O’Sullivan (2) 10-1 Jackson Page

Round 2 (bo25)

David Gilbert 13-4 Robert Milkins (16)
Stephen Maguire 13-9 Shaun Murphy (8)

Joe O’Connor 6-13 Kyren Wilson (12)
John Higgins (13) 13-12 Mark Allen (4)

Judd Trump (3) 13-7 Tom Ford (14)
Jak Jones 13-9 Si Jiahui

Jack Lisowski 11-13 Stuart Bingham
Ryan Day 7-13 Ronnie O’Sullivan (2)

Quarter-Finals (bo25)

David Gilbert 13-8 Stephen Maguire
Kyren Wilson (12) 13-8 John Higgins (13)

Judd Trump (3) 9-13 Jak Jones
Stuart Bingham 13-10 Ronnie O’Sullivan (2)

Semi-Finals (bo33)

David Gilbert 11-17 Kyren Wilson (12)
Jak Jones 17-12 Stuart Bingham

Final (bo35)

Kyren Wilson (12) 18-14 Jak Jones

Click here for the latest live scores and session times.

Featured photo credit: WST

One Comment

  1. Jay Brannon

    Darren Morgan remains the only Welshman to defeat O’Sullivan at the Crucible.

    O’Sullivan is into the second round for a record-extending 28th time.

    His display was very mature, restricting Page to half-chances a lot of the time.

    Ryan Day lost to O’Sullivan 13-11 in round two 18 years ago. Day at this stage for the first time in a decade.

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