Ronnie O’Sullivan sends ominous message to rivals after Ding Junhui Masters win

Ronnie O’Sullivan clashes with Mark Allen during tense game

Ronnie O’Sullivan has sent an ominous message to his rivals following his Betfred Masters win over Ding Junhui. O’Sullivan came back from 5-3 down to beat Ding in a thrilling match in Milton Keynes. The seven-time champion will face either John Higgins or Mark Allen in the quarter-final.

O’Sullivan had a poor end to the 2020 season, which he mostly put down to exhaustion from his running with ‘The Rocket’ a keen runner as he looks to keep fit away from the table and stay mentally refreshed within the current snooker bubble.

However, the 45-year-old also said his form went downhill after his cue tip came off.

O’Sullivan had to replace his tip at the Scottish Open in December, something he says is a mistake he will not make in the future.

“I was playing really well up until when my tip went wrong really,” O’Sullivan told Eurosport.

“The UK [Open] was just a complete write off, I just overdone the running and I was just absolutely fatigued.

“Not making no excuses but I was just absolutely exhausted, running just took absolute priority.

“But after that, I thought I’d played pretty good all season, just when my tip came off.

“I’m not very good with new tips, some players can put them on and play but after that my performances just got worse and worse and I just couldn’t wait to see the back of the season to be honest with you.

“But I think you have to learn from situations and I’m just going to get another cue now.

“If it ever happens to me again where my tip comes off I’ll just use another cue because that two weeks was horrible, you know.”

Speaking about the win over Ding, O’Sullivan insisted he had to ignore his thoughts to ensure he believed he had a chance to come back and win.

“I just had to hang in there,” he added.

“He started off well, I didn’t really get into the game.

“I just tried to nick a couple of games, when I got to 3-2 I thought it could get a bit exciting but then he pulled away again at 4-2 and I just thought ‘am I capable of putting three good frames in against someone like Ding?’.

“But I just had to ignore that and focus on one ball at a time and just see what develops you know.”

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