Ronnie O'Sullivan has never won the Pokerstars.com Masters and World Championship in the same year. The sponsors of the latter, Betfred.com, are offering 16/1 on him doing so in 2010.

Ronnie seems to play well in spells. Last year he played some great stuff to win a fourth Masters crown. At the Crucible he failed to reproduce this form.

So the good news for his many fans is that if he fails to land a fifth Wembley title this week, he could be a racing certainty to become world champion for a fourth time in May. Only once in the last six years has he failed to win either title.

He faces a very tough opening round encounter in the shape of Australian Neil Robertson, who lies a place behind him at third in the current provisional rankings.

One concern I would have for O'Sullivan is his constant chopping and changing of cues. Even for a talent such as he is, this doesn't seem like the most sensible policy.

Yes, he won the Masters last year with a brand new model - a remarkable feat - but it should also be remembered that Joe Perry had the pink to beat him 6-4 in the first round.

O'Sullivan's record in the Masters is second only to Stephen Hendry's and if he wins the title on Sunday he will have won in excess of £1m in prize money at Wembley.

It's 15 years since he first scooped the trophy and he remains the favourite to do so again this season.

Robertson beat O'Sullivan in the quarter-finals of the first two ranking events he won and is a confident, attacking player in much the same style as his opponent.

He played very well at Wembley last year but lost 6-3 to Stephen Maguire in the quarter-finals, a match which ended with five successive centuries.

Neil went home for Christmas and said it was extremely hot, not a problem he has encountered since returning to the UK.

But will he manage to freeze O'Sullivan out?


Rodney 'Dave' Trotter said...

Really looking forward to this one. Neither set the world on fire last week at the Championship League but I sense in Ronnie a renewed vigour for the game on the back of Mr Hearn's involvement and he could put on a real show this afternoon.

The Snooker Oracle

Anonymous said...

What do people think of ticket prices for this event? I am going tomorrow night and I had a sharp intake of breath when I was quoted 20 pounds for the ticket (+ booking fees which admittedly are beyond the remit of World Snooker). This seems a bit steep for one match

Anonymous said...

From what Barry Hearn's been saying, maybe in future you'll see two short matches rather than one longer one...

Anonymous said...

If players want to play for more cash, expect big hikes in ticket prices and shorter formats to cater for today's society's inability to concentrate on things for more than 20 minutes.

shaun said...

r.e 12 18 if tonights match is anything like the first 4 frames of this afternoons game then 20 quid will seem a snip

Anonymous said...

Snooker © The Fine Art Method
A secret is wasted if not shared
Hello Dave
How are you! That was a good punch line and plug Dave for our hard up sponsors quoting the odds for Ronnie making the “Big Two” trophies.

The odds of 16/1; For the two games may be confusing to some would be punters. Not a lesson on odds but“Enlightenment” on easy calculations on doubles.

A 3/1 with a 3/1= 4x 4 = 16 which equals true odds of 15/1 or times your stake.
A 4/1 with a 5/1= 5x 6 = 30 which equals true odds of 29/1 or times your stake.

I think that’s the least we can do Dave to help our poor old sponsors in these difficult times.
Mr hey you


What a great comeback by O'Sullivan. Both played their part. A classic. A pleasure to watch it.

jamie brannon said...

You think Selby and Williams might have discussed not both coming out to Kasabian. Maguire so far has come out to the best tune.

shaun said...

considering i backed robertson in running when 1 nil up i could not complain as he did very little wrong it was a great match. williams looks decent value tonight at 11 to 10

shaun said...

scrap that 11 to 10 williams 2 to 1 with stan james got to be worth a few quid

Anonymous said...

Ronnie yet again being an idiot in interviews.

Well played Ronnie on the table.

Red Card off it !!

jamie brannon said...

Being an idiot? I thought it was hilarious, better than the usual cliched anwsers most of the players give. There seemed to be a bit of needle between Maguire and King judging by the post match comments. King has only made 59 career centuries a slightly low number for someone who has been in the top 16 a few times.

Anonymous said...

King had a problem with some oap in the crowd, as for his career centuries i have said this on many occasion's, if Mark could control the cueball a bit better he would have more centuries to his name, possibly a few ranking titles..