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.