Ronnie O’Sullivan broke into tears after winning the World Snooker Championship for a record-equalling seventh time on Monday. O’Sullivan defeated Judd Trump 18-13 at the Crucible and was emotional after a result he dubbed the “greatest” of his glittering career.
O’Sullivan had led 12-5 overnight but saw his advantage cut to 14-11 going into Monday’s evening session. But he won four of the six frames in the final session to draw level with the great Stephen Hendry on seven crowns.
He is the oldest World Championship winner ever at 46 years and 122 days old, beating Ray Reardon. The Welshman was 45 years and 203 days old when he was triumphant for the sixth time in 1978.
The Rocket picked up a £500,000 winner’s cheque and said afterwards: “As far as I’m concerned this fella [Trump] is already an all-time great, the way he plays the game. He plays such dynamic snooker. To put up with that pressure for two days… Even when he’s not playing well you think he’s going to spark into action. You’re having to be on your guard at all times.
“I tried to be as relaxed as I could but that is probably my greatest result I’ve ever had, against somebody like Judd. I’ve never bothered about records! Don’t get me wrong when you get them, it’s kinda nice.
“But I’ve never performed well if I’m going for stuff like that, I’ve just tried to enjoy my game, compete and enjoy being on the circuit and enjoy what I do and work hard at my game. And then you let the snooker gods decide what they’re going to decide.
“This 17 days, they were on my side. With Judd, we all knew he wasn’t playing his best, but that’s what a champion does. They get to the final without playing their best and nearly win it. He’s going to win it a few times and the other guys better get their act together!”
Runner-up Trump admitted to the BBC: “I want to say massive congratulations to Ronnie. Its’ been a pleasure to share a table with him. It’s an amazing achievement and he’s the best player of all time.
“He keeps getting better and better. His determination and dedication are clear to see. He’s been the best player this tournament by quite a distance. I was just glad to make a match out of it.”
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