It seems unlikely now that the 2013 Betfair World Championship will not end with a fifth title for Ronnie O’Sullivan.

He has been the best player in the event, playing with great discipline as well as his usual panache.

Last night there was a slight slip in this discipline when he was told off by the referee, Michaela Tabb, for making a gesture she construed as obscene.

This wouldn’t be the first time O’Sullivan had done this, although the BBC was for once shy about running a replay (assuming the incident had been captured on camera).

O’Sullivan argued his case but then just got on with it. He lost that frame but played well in the last of the session. There was no implosion this time. He’s here to do a job.

He resumes 14-10 up against Judd Trump, who seemed to be the target of people in the audience deliberately trying to put him off.

There’s no place for this in snooker, never mind at the Crucible. It used to happen regularly at the Wembley Conference Centre and is usually tied in with people having consumed too much alcohol.

Trump has spoken in the past of the need for snooker ‘to be more like darts.’ Well this is what it would be like. No thanks.

The other semi-final was poor in standard. Ricky Walden resumed 6-2 up against Barry Hawkins who managed to close to 9-7 despite a highest break of only 47.

These two seem to be suffering from the pressure of the situation in which they find themselves. This is a golden chance for either to fulfil a boyhood dream and reach a world final. In some ways, being the underdog against O’Sullivan – assuming he wins today – will release some of that pressure.

Both Ricky and Barry can play much better. Maybe they will today. Whoever wins will certainly have to if they are to stand a chance in the final.


Anonymous said...

Ah yes. Morons trying to put a player off. Classy.njust what the Ronnie bandwagon doesn't need but he is better than that isn't he?
Perhaps not based on the lewd gesture he used.
It's not a new thing with O'Sullivan but he hasn't done it for a year.

Anonymous said...

I see Ronnie has been fined £250 for swearing too. Could you just imagine if a snooker player had Tourettes, he'd end up owing Barry Hearn money!

Anonymous said...

I've been at the semis ... Can tell you there a lot of tanked up spectators there

Anonymous said...

Facinating match so far, not just break building but a few scrappy frames also to mix it up. missed ron cue jesture so not sure what fuss is about but good stuff so far, should have been the final. think they go the seedings wrong this year as thought the draw looked top heavy from the start & though i didnt think it possible we've ended up with some good, solid but overall crap match players in other semi, funny how ron never seems to face top clasx opposition in a world final, just j.higgins back in 2001, nothing since.

Anonymous said...

Dennis taylor should be shot, the man suffers from more bouts of amneisure & contradicts him self more than any commentator ever, rons the only genius bla bla bla, seem to recall him saying same about a.higgins, j.white. s.hendry in years gone by not to mention how great maguire was going to be 10 yrs ago, everytime he opens his mouth its like someone just pulled the chain. do one dennis.

Anonymous said...

Assuming ron makes the final, would this be the biggest upset in world if not snooker history if he lost ?

Anonymous said...

Since the BBC obsess about training cameras on players to the point that they must have hours of footage of Ronnie picking his nose, it would be far fetched to believe they didn't capture the incident.
More likely, reluctant to show because of its nature which tells its own story.
Good on Michaela for warning him.
They need to have stewards there to eject those making noises to deliberately put off players.

Anonymous said...

Final will be absolutely pointless , either of these 2 won't get no more than six frames Not worth watching

Anonymous said...


Alex Higgins had the same idea once upon a time !

Anonymous said...

Dear Dave,
Saying someone should be shot (9.26am) doesnt seem appropriate for a blog with comment moderation enabled- I was surprised to see it here.

Anonymous said...

the incident is on youtube

Ronnie misses, uts his cue between his legs and runs his right hand up and down in a masturbating gesture.

the ref doesn't warn him until his next visit.

when warned, he puts his cue to the inside of his thigh and rubs the moves the cue up and down as if cleaning it....


walk backwards
put his cue between his legs
and rub the shaft up and down

which is what he done the first time and what the ref warned him about.

when pulled up he completely "changes" what he did.

its on you tube CLEAR TO SEE

the guy is just a parasite. great player but is using snooker and his so called fans and taking them for a ride.

Anonymous said...

Hope the BBC have plenty filler on stand-by to replace the scheduled live 4th session on Monday eve.
Frank Spencer - now's your chance !

Anonymous said...


Not as big a shock as Johnson in '86, I feel. Ricky has beaten O'Sullivan in a final before and both have won a tournament this season.

Anonymous said...

What a semi final. Wirlwind walden v hurricane hawkins, ron must be crapping it.

Anonymous said...

Dont know why were so suprised the final will be rubbish, correct me if i'm wrong but we have only had a final between two of the top 4 ranked playrrs once in 10 yrs which was murphy v higgins in 2009 i think ?

Anonymous said...

Yeh, the 86 Champ was a surprise. Even more than the one 12 months previous.
Thing about JJ was, he was same odds before the '86 WC as he was before the '87 WC and still he gets to the final again, amazing.
And White couldn't lift the trophy just once !
Where's the justice ?

Anyway, regarding Ronnie. I've written much about his outstanding ability and contribution to the game. Much of it based on his 'new found' maturity. Afraid after last night's display, he has tumbled way down in my estimation once again.
His attitude this year seems to be one of scorn, resentment and a sarcastic display of petulance that he's able to swan in without too much preparation and still be able to progress to the latter stages of the game's showpiece event. He has a point, but to conduct himself as though we should be grateful for his presence is very presumptuous indeed.
Talent without equal maybe, but a true sportsman ?, definitely no.

Colin M said...

10.59 - that was from the top drawer....!!!!

NewsfoxSport said...

I'm genuinely gutted that it appears we are headed for another dismal final (hope I'm wrong).

To be fair though, Trump O'Sullivan has been a real classic. Brilliant.

Interesting how poor the finals have been of late. Trump Higgins the oasis in a series of one sided games in last few years.

Also worth noting how often Ronnie has played an outsider in the final. So even when there were less tournaments, top players were still losing.

He had Carter twice as an outside and mullered Dott one year. To be fair, he often plays his biggest rival before the final.

People talk about Joe Johnson but he didn't have to play ROS, who has a record of stuffing people in finals that even Mr Davis can't match.

My view is only Walden can challenge the Rocket but will need performance increase of 40 odd per cent. Be amazing if it happened.

I'd bet on a big win for ROS altho scoreline bets a nightmare in 35s.

Anonymous said...

1.07 - thanks Willie !!!

I swear Dennis Taylor is going to climax next time Ronnie plays another screw with reverse side

Anonymous said...

Trump put up a great fight, but to be fair if Ron can't beat a kid that looks like an effeminate underwear model maybe he should retire for good.

Hopefully Walden will go through, since I think his natural slowness may rile Ronnie and perhaps cause the game to run closer. If Hawkins makes the final I think the 1989 scoreline record could be in danger.

Anonymous said...

Lets not right the other guy off too soon, gawd no's how we ended up like this but it's hardly the fault of the ricky & barry the rest of the field rolled over. who ever wins i just hope he makes a fist of it in the final, last thing snooker needs is a blue bibbon humiliation. not a final any of us wished for & it is sad in a way we dont seem to get the dream finals with the best of the best as we did through the 90's & early 00's we were addicted to.

Anonymous said...

It would be nice to see ron tested in a final for once, dont think it will be this year though but then again who knows, one things for sure, if he looses this i thonk the frustration knowing he should never loose to these guys over a long match could drive him away for good.

Anonymous said...

hawkins and walden can beat o'sullivan both have beating him before and there other matches with him have bean close

Anonymous said...

I've seen the Ronnie obscene gesture warning and I see a pattern.
Michaela has twice picked up the cue ball from exactly the same position instead of taking a colour from the pocket.
It first happened on 23rd April 2010 when Maguire played Dott, then again on 25th April 2013 when White played Poomjaeng.
Both times the cue ball was placed in precisely the same place (see YouTube).
The "gesture" that Tabb thinks she saw was that side of the table too.
In short she could have imagined she saw it said be amazed Ronnie would do such a vile thing.
I think the case above proves Ronnies innocence so can we all calm down and move on.

Anonymous said...

Anyone watching walden/hawkings? Just like watching two drunks playing pool in the pub! Steven hawkings would give them a good game!

Ronnie said...

Mental note: 8-0, 13-3, 18-5, trophy, home.

Anonymous said...

Looking at the standard of play from most of the top 16 this year I bet Hendry was wishing he'd had a go - an eigth title was his for the taking!

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

High time John Virgo and Dennis Taylor are replaced. Just don't like the tone of their voices and Virgo's "where's the cue ball going" is now a unrivaled trademark irritation.

q q said...

As is the comments telling the crowd when to roar and various other comments like that and making them laugh. Annoying. Starting to go right ROS too.