The Daily Mail reports that Ronnie O'Sullivan has told World Snooker he is withdrawing from the Betfred.com World Championship.

However, O'Sullivan has apparently had a rethink and is consulting with a leading sports psychologist ahead of the Crucible.

According to the newspaper, O'Sullivan said: "Last week I put in a verbal withdrawal to World Snooker and told them I wasn't going to play in Sheffield. That's when it really hit me that this could be it, for five or 10 minutes my heart was pounding.

"I said if it's easier to say I'm retiring then say that. They said that's fine, but we'll give you the weekend to think about it. On Monday they called back, and talked me back into it."

O'Sullivan, who won the world title in 2001, 2004 and 2008, is due to play Dominic Dale in the first round.

He has been largely de-motivated this season, has fallen to tenth in the world rankings and has not won a match in a ranking event since last September's World Open.

The Mail reports that O'Sullivan is consulting with Dr Steve Peters, who advised the British cycling team ahead of the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

You can read the story here.


Anonymous said...

I sincerely hope Ronnie can pull himself together for Sheffield it would be a shame if he missed it.Lets hope the doc can help him.

Anonymous said...

Muppet. This is so difficult for Dominic Dale to deal with, almost tantamount to gamesmanship.

Anonymous said...


im quitting
no im not
im quitting
no im not
i may quit
no im not

just GO!

absolutely fed up of the Ronnie merry-go-round.

Marek said...

If he did not appear at Crucible it would be an insult for snooker.

Colin M said...

As a snooker fan, this doesn't make pleasant reading Dave. On the one hand as a fan, I hope he plays and he gets the winning feeling back again. On the other hand as a human being, if he's really not enjoying it and it's causing him so much anguish to keep playing, he should simply retire. I would accept it if he retired, or retired for a number of years before attempting a comeback.

He will always be considered by many as the best/most talented player ever, in the sense that he has been able to sustain a quality of snooker unseen by anyone else. Old cliche, but he has definitely 'raised the bar' in his time.

With all that said....

Here's hoping that Ronnie can deliver us one last hurrah before he does retire. How good would that be?

John McBride said...

We have someone here who has a VERY troubled mind. Of that there is no doubt. Rather than the fella doing the ‘Hokey-Cokey’ all the time, why doesn’t he draw a line in the sand & take a break from the game? Let the fella sort himself out, regain his hunger for the game & in the hope that he one day does come back, he will come back to rapturous applause. Of that I have no doubt either.

The game will carry on without him, however let’s not forget how wonderful it is to see Ronnie O’Sullivan in full flow because in my opinion, there is no finer sight. Does it do the game any good with all this ambiguity surrounding him? I’m not sure it does. Does it do Ronnie O’Sullivan any good? Definitely not.

Decisions, decisions, decisions. Let us all hope that he makes the right one for his sake.

snooker147 said...

Hope Ronnie doesn't pull out.

Anonymous said...

Surely Ronnie can't pull out can he?

Anonymous said...

I am a massive fan of Ronnie O’Sullivan, and it took me an age to get tickets for his “potential” Quarter Final against John Higgins. However, I feel that Ronnie needs to put up or shut up, as it is not fair on the supporters or the sponsors, and even himself if he is not happy playing the game.

Anonymous said...

If it was,nt for the likes of the rocket,hurricane and whirlwind snooker would be as exciting as paint drying every other player feeds off their light including journalists.

Anonymous said...

Best for ronnie is to take 2-3 years out and like shumacar in F1 return. He will then surely have the desire to qualify through all the rounds and win titles. Similar thing has happened in women tennis with Kim Klijster and Justin Hennin winning titles after they retire. It certainly generates more interest.

gus gorman said...

Some good comments here,of course you always get the silly comments like the the few at the top of the thread.
Lets hope Ronnie sorts himself out,the game needs him and im sure deep down he needs the game also.

jamie brannon said...

If he comes back and does as well as Schumacher then probably not much point bothering!

jamie brannon said...

Well said Gus, people forget that what O'Sullivan has is an illness.

It doesn't excuse everything, but it should hopefully make people be a bit more understanding and not think he does all this because he craves attention and to be awkward.

Anonymous said...

Well, Barry Hearn made the right decision not to include Ronnie in the pre-tournament appearances and interviews.

Neil and Judd did a good job of it, it has to be said.

Maybe the psychologist can lead him to see a psychiatrist and fix that head once and for all.

Paul Golder said...

Just a small point but Dr Steve Peters is indeed a psychiatrist and not a psychologist.

Anonymous said...

maybe worzel gummidge can give him a new head.

Anonymous said...

Its a fact,snooker wouldnt get much of a mention if it wasnt for the likes of the Hurricane,Whirlwind and Rocket,as mentioned above.

The fact is exciting players make the sport,and surely will always be thus...

Lets face it,and,nothing against these guys,but a Dott v O Brien match is hardly going to set the world alight is it!

If only Jimmy could find some form,what a championship it would be with him playing well!!

Anonymous said...

He can't live without the game and he can't live with it at times either. World Snooker are right to try and talk him into playing because he IS an asset and IS the biggest draw and folk who say well let him quit are wrong because yes snooker would go on without him but it would be a poorer spectacle.

Dave H said...

World Snooker say that, contrary to the story, they didn't try and talk him into playing

He phoned them on Thursday and said he was withdrawing. They said they would need it in writing. The next day he phoned back and said he wasn't withdrawing.

Dr Steve Peters says he hasn't met with O'Sullivan as of yet.

Anonymous said...

Ronnie... MESSAGE OF SUPPORT... Come on mate, anyone who knows anything about snooker and loves the game would want to see you carry on playing. You're the most talented snooker player we've EVER seen bar NONE... pure CLASS when you're in full flow! I know we (the public) are distant from your personal life/issues but you bring so much joy to many. Hope you can get stuff sorted and carry on playing. PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE!

Anonymous said...

Is it just me or is there a slow erosion of ronnies presence and image in relation too promoting tournaments e.g. front of official programme and launch of world championship 2011,anyway bums on seats is all that matters and come Monday which side of the arena will be full, have a guess?

Anonymous said...

Tired of reading about this socalled disease, no matter if it's from the most talented player or from Mark
Allen or any other of these highly priveleged sportsmen. It's hard work, that showbizz, I respect that, but if you are sick, you have to quit.

C'mon Dominic Dale!

Anonymous said...

so dave

did ronnie or the newspaper make that part up?

Dave H said...

Not saying anyone made anything up, just that the two accounts differ slightly

Anonymous said...

Dave -
is that fence itchy?

Anonymous said...

I just feel sorry for Dominic Dale.

Bob said...

Must admit, I'm quite bored of the whole O'Sullivan picking and choosing his tournaments because he's "bored with the game" or "there's too many frames". Why does every tournament have to be centered around whether he is going to play or not.

Arguably he is one of the top talents, but he's the biggest moaner that the sport has ever known.

Fact is, missing tournaments is hurting his ranking, but when he can be chewed to "grace" one with his presence, he hasn't put the practice in beforehand. The amount of ranking points he has picked up this season is pathetic.

Personally I would rather see someone else get his spot in the top 16, who is willing to turn up for the fans. Dropping down to the qualifiers may be good for O'Sullivan - its worked wonders for rejuvenating William's career, and perhaps he'll only remember how fortunate he is to be able to automatically advance to the final stages of tournaments - rather than go through the qualifiers every time.

Anonymous said...

Based on the last 10 years of events nothing will ever change. It's been so many stories, so many statements and declarations and pretty much no change at all.

Think about it. Building his game from scratch, taking a year off, going to USA to play pool, play his hardest and on and on.

All the while just playing snooker, sometimes brilliant, sometimes rubbish - depending on his mood.

I wish things would change but I seriously doubt it ever will.

Betty Logan said...

If this season has proven anything, it's that it needs Barry Hearn more than it needs Ronnie O'Sullivan. I think Barry would have liked Ronnie to spearhead snooker's revival, but to be fair he doesn't need him in China because he's got Ding, and the German Masters was a huge success despite Ronnie's absence. In fact the only 'disappointing' event (in terms of the crowds) in a season that hardly featured Ron has been the UK, and I guess you could put that down to the horrendous weather we had at the time.

Anonymous said...

get on with it and quit. attention seeker beyond belief.he,s just taking the p*** out the public. there is nothing wrong with him.needs to be in the press all the time or he spits his dummy out. snooker will survive without ronnie .the press are to blame partly anyway if they ignored his bull*** perhaps he might have to start playing again.

Alan Craig said...

I'm with John McBride on this subject.

Comments about him attention seeking and taking the p*** out of the public are ill-informed and don't help anyone.

There have been comments in the past alluding to him being ill, along the lines of probably being Bi-Polar, but no formal confirmation of that as far as I know.

If it is the case then the WPBSA have a duty of care to ensure that it is dealt with properly and assist with the necessary support in the workplace.

They would also have a responsibility to ensure that unnecessary criticism of Ronnie is avoided at all costs to protect his well being.

So,is Ronnie ill or not?

Surely it makes sense to clarify the position, not for the sake of any fans or the public, because that is secondary, but for the player's sake.

Something isn't right, and it requires some attention.

Anonymous said...

Nonsense AC

if hes ill or not i dont frankly care much

not that i wish anyone any ill health. i dont

but, players who break rules, regardless of illness or not should not be let off lightly time and time and time again, pandering to him, just cos he is very very good. which he is.

have some balls and throw the book at him the next time he steps out of line.

oh, and have a look at the spotlight kids daily star bit today.

its all ME ME ME