Shaun Murphy has labelled Ronnie O'Sullivan's behaviour at the World Open last month as 'pathetic,' 'unprofessional' and 'disrespectful.'
In an exclusive interview with The Sun's Andy Dillon, Murphy also said he was "tired of all this 'Ronnie's Ronnie' stuff. I don't subscribe to it, that he should be allowed to get away with it."
O'Sullivan made a public point of protesting about the scrapping of the maximum bonus prize on his way to his 147 against Mark King in Glasgow.
He shook hands with King after potting the pink and was instructed by the referee, Jan Verhaas, to then pot the black 'for the fans.'
O'Sullivan immediately went on television to blast the axing of the bonus prize, although he later backtracked claiming his behaviour had nothing to do with money.
Murphy, watching at home, was not impressed. He told The Sun: "I thought it was pathetic, unprofessional. It was disrespectful to the public who had paid to come and watch him play.
"Four thousand pounds is a lot of money to a lot of people. It was bad taste."
Murphy, who plays O'Sullivan in the Premier League at Brentwood on Thursday night, added: "I'm a bit tired of all this 'Ronnie's Ronnie' stuff. I don't subscribe to it, that he should be allowed to get away with it.
"There's no doubt Ronnie is the biggest draw in snooker and he is the person everyone flocks to watch. Snooker is better with Ronnie than without. He creates a buzz and I enjoy playing him.
"We play in the Premier League this week. As far as the players are concerned he is the benchmark even though he is not no.1. But from a bloke's perspective, I watched what he did on TV and didn't like it.
"Some of my mates thought it was quite funny when I told them but for the people who saw it, it was quite offensive."
Good on Shaun for speaking his mind instead of hiding behind niceties.
However, I think he has gone overboard here. At the time I said I thought O'Sullivan's behaviour was crass - which it was - but as with most of his antics although it may have harmed his reputation with some, it did not damage snooker's. If anything it enhanced interest in the tournament.
As I also said at the time, the publicity he brings the sport cannot be overestimated. Witness the story I wrote about David Roe in Iran: Ronnie is the only player there are interested in emulating out there, and that goes for many other places too.
The shame was that the controversy detracted from what was, by any standards, a brilliant break.
But it is true that Murphy is only articulating in public what many players believe in private.
A number of them do feel that O'Sullivan can basically get away with anything.
In some regards this could be through jealousy at his talent but there is also a feeling that he believes himself to be above the game.
I actually believe O'Sullivan enjoys ruffling a few feathers and the attention it brings him. I hope he continues his maverick ways for many years to come because they've kept a great many people entertained even if they have also brought him a vitrolic stream of abuse from his detractors.
No doubt this story will generate much more frothing at the mouth. In truth, though, it's the bread and butter of many sports - football and boxing in particular - where rivalries are conducted in the pages of tabloid newspapers.
It's all good fun, really. I doubt O'Sullivan cares what Murphy thinks about him and I'm sure the feeling is mutual.
You can read The Sun story here.