2020 World Snooker Championship: Ronnie O’Sullivan wins sixth world title

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Ronnie O’Sullivan won his sixth world title and a record 37th overall with a dominant 18-8 victory over Kyren Wilson in Sheffield.

O’Sullivan equalizes childhood hero Steve Davis on the Crucible crowns and surpasses Stephen Hendry on the All-Time Ranking Event Wins list.

Although Wilson fought 10-7, O’Sullivan took full control with an eight-frame streak on Sunday.

O’Sullivan, 44, is the oldest champion since Ray Reardon, who was 45 in 1978.

The Englishman collects £ 500,000 in prize money, climbing back to second in the world behind last year’s champion Judd Trump.

It was the biggest margin of victory in the final since 2008, when O’Sullivan beat Ali Carter by the same score.

O’Sullivan told BBC Two: “I never really think about titles. When I was a kid, I never really dreamed that I would be here. To be here and to have had all of these victories is a dream that has come true.

“There was a part of me that decided I didn’t play enough to justify winning a tournament of this size which is a test of endurance.

“I’m not really an endurance type player because I’m not competitive enough. I had half a chance but didn’t expect to win it. “

O’Sullivan reigns once more

There has long been a debate over who is the greatest snooker of all time – Davis ruled the 1980s, Hendry ruled the 1990s but O’Sullivan is now the only one in terms of ranking of events. won.

His latest achievement puts him at the top of the field, having won his first return in 1993 to the UK Championship at just 17, and he also won a 20th Triple Crown title, which extends the record.

An enigmatic character, O’Sullivan often has to fight his own demons and did so in the final with his retaliatory action, although he displayed both his supreme and slapdash manner during the 17 days of this tournament.

He beat Thailand’s Thepchaiya Un-Nooh 10-1 in his opener in a record 108 minutes, defeated dangerous Ding Junhui and responded to significant deficits to oust three-time winners Mark Williams and Mark Selby .

But there were issues too, claiming snooker players were treated like ‘lab rats’ for allowing fans to attend Day 1 – with spectators returning for the final, as Selby described it. as “disrespectful” for some of his reckless shot selections during their semi-final.

Although he performed far from his best on day one of the final, O’Sullivan showed why he is considered a sports genius by still managing to open a three-frame lead before Sunday, as the game turns into in procession.

Having criticized the lower level of play in the rankings, it is a testament to O’Sullivan’s longevity that his last world title comes in a third decade – 19 years after his first victory – leaving him adrift of the legendary Hendry print.

Wilson withers in the summer heat

The potter from Kettering Wilson progressed into his first world final after being excluded from the first round as his opponent Anthony Hamilton retired due to health concerns and defeating defending champion Judd Trump in the quarter-finals.

A two-time winner of the standings, the 28-year-old was stricken with nerves and failed to settle down in the opening rally, failing 8-2 behind and he never really made it through. get closer to O’Sullivan.

Having the opportunity to get closer to 9-8 in his hands, he will remember missing the final red on Saturday with major regret and a missed chance after a chance Sunday proved fatal.

Wilson said, “I’m not going to fight too hard, I’m playing the best of all time. It was a dream come true knowing I was playing Ronnie in the final.

“You can’t respect him too much or he will overtake me, which happened today.

“I am a fighter, I always will be. I really struggled in the first session and just relaxed and let go of the chains. “

With the event being moved from July to August from its usual April to May time slot due to the coronavirus pandemic, Wilson now has less than a year to wait to try to make amends.

The story of the match

Last year’s finale between Trump and John Higgins was a master class at break-building, with the couple producing 11 centuries between them, but this centerpiece was substandard in comparison.

Obviously concerned with how he was hitting the cue ball on opening day, O’Sullivan managed a century and four breaks of 50 or more to open a massive six-frame advantage.

“The Warrior” Wilson was impressed from the start, but fought back taking four in a row to lead 8-6, but missed a crucial final red in the last frame of the day, allowing O’Sullivan to clear three. images at night. buffer.

Wilson started Day 2 with a confidence-boosting 73 to lead 10-8, but poor stuffing and loose positional play then opened up opportunities for his opponent.

O’Sullivan got into his rhythm by compiling seven winning contributions without having to do too much work, moving from victory to the final session.

And he completed his triumph on the biggest snooker scene in style, needing just 11 minutes in the last session to take a 96 break.

Analysis

Six-time world champion Steve Davis on BBC Two:

Ronnie is still there at the top and I’m sure he’s capable of taking it even further. Definitely in his fifties, if he wishes.

He came up with a game plan to play a fast attacking game, it was risky but paid off in the end.

Wouldn’t it be nice to see him win the Sports Personality of the Year?

1991 World Champion John Parrott on BBC Two:

It’s a pleasure to come to Le Creuset and watch it play live.

It’s a frightening amount of talent that he has. Winning it six times is quite a feat.

He’s the most watchable player we have in our sport.

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