A total of 109 players entered this year’s World Championship. Of these, 32 made the Crucible, including great champions of the past and likely winners of the future.

However, it seems inconceivable now that Ronnie O’Sullivan won’t be the last man standing on Monday.

He has clinically taken Stephen Hendry apart in this morning’s session of their semi-final and I can’t see Ali Carter or Joe Perry stopping him in the final.

It was the first time Hendry has suffered a session whitewash in 23 Crucible appearances encompassing 80 matches. It was the seventh session whitewash in a Crucible semi-final and the third by O'Sullivan at Sheffield.

O'Sullivan has now constructed 47 centuries this season. If he makes seven more in the rest of this match and the final he will surpass Hendry's record of 53, set in the 1993/94 campaign.

This would be remarkable because it would have been accomplished in far fewer tournaments - 9 compared with Hendry's 15.

O'Sullivan is also now tied with John Higgins on 85 centuries, with Hendry still top at Sheffield on 116.

Some would argue the Rocket’s had an easy draw but I’d say this is unfair: it was only ‘easy’ because he is so good.

His main fortune has been to avoid players who play the kind of game he dislikes: slow, scrappy and drawn out.

All of his opponents thus far – Liu Chuang, Mark Williams, Liang Wenbo and Stephen Hendry – are open, attacking players who go for their shots. There is no better player in the modern game at this kind of snooker than O’Sullivan, so their approach would have suited him fine.

A Hendry comeback looks unlikely now and Carter or Perry will have to produce the snooker of their life to prevent Ronnie completing a hat-trick of world titles.


Anonymous said...

The degenerate played very well.
It's a shame such a horrid human being should be so gifted at snooker.
Fred Riley

andy said...

It has to be said, Ronnie is unbeatable when he's in the right frame of mind. Great stuff.

Hendry had the highest break of the match with a 140 though... :o)

What a fantastic World Championships it's been, let's hope Perry or Carter are playing the best snooker of their lives in the final along with Ronnie, and hope they push the Genius all the way...


Anonymous said...

Well done Hendry. Nobody expected him to get to the Semi. I certainly didnt when he was 9-7 down to Mark Allen.

Had he lost in the 1st round, he would've been under alot of pressure from the very start of the next season to hold on to his Top 16 place.

Hendry = Greatest ever.

Anonymous said...

It's hard to look past Ronnie now. If Carter got through to the final it could be close as, no disrespect to Perry, Carter is more likely to win frames in one visit on a more regular basis.
It would also be poetic justice if the two 147 men reached the final in a tournament with so many maximum attempts. I also think Carter is more likely to last the 35 frame distance than Perry - this for me is key, as demonstrated yesterday.
As for Hendry, it's good to see him back in contention, he has the potential to win another ranking event, but I think his days of winning the world championship are over. I thought he was fortunate to meet an out-of-sorts Ding and Ryan Day - had both played near their best then they would have pushed him close, if not beaten him.
He has only made the semis twice in the last 5 championships, both losing to O'Sullivan, and the combined score was 34-10. His ability to play is still there, his ability to last the distance has to be questioned, even though he was playing a genius on both occasions.

Sam T

Anonymous said...

I agree with the degenerate comment. O'Sullivan, along with Alex Higgins, is the most odious creature in World snooker.