The Sunday Post (Inverness)
Ron final delight as Rocket power blows Ford away
O’sullivan ended the brilliant run of Tom Ford to reach an eighth UK Championship final.
This has been the best tournament of 35-year-old Ford’s career, but he proved no match for O’sullivan, who wrapped up a 6-1 win and will bid for a seventh title at the York Barbican today.
Ford, who beat Joe Perry 6-2 in the quarter-finals, made the perfect start by winning the opening frame 68-32, but O’sullivan responded with a break of 122 in frame two and did not look back.
He won the next five frames to complete his win, punishing Ford for his misses and completing two more half-centuries in frames four and six.
Aside from a 6-5 win over Ken Doherty in the second round, O’sullivan has been utterly dominant, dropping no more than a single frame in any match.
He will face either Stuart Bingham or Mark Allen in the final.
Victory today would take ‘The Rocket’ to a record 19 tournament wins in BBC ‘Triple Crown’ events – the World and UK Championships, and Masters.
An upbeat O’sullivan said: “If it does not happen this year, then maybe the year after, there is still plenty of time.
“I want to go out there and be involved in a good match. What is more important is that it is a good final for snooker and the fans who follow the sport. “At some point you have to ask what it is all about. Sometimes you wake up and think there are a lot of people out there who get a lot of pleasure (from seeing him win). I want to be able to repay that by playing with a smile on my face.
“If I am not winning, then it is not the end of the world as people still want to see you do well.
“I have amazing support here like I have done all my career and it is still great to be playing decent snooker and to be performing for them. I feel them willing me on and they know I appreciate them and have a big heart for the snooker fans.”
O’sullivan has lost just three frames across his past four matches, keeping his focus despite an ongoing disagreement with World Snooker chairman Barry Hearn.
O’sullivan suggested after his second-round win that he is “ready to go” and form a breakaway tour, clarifying afterwards it would be a “last resort”.
In response, Hearn said he is “bending over backwards for Ronnie” and his “door is always open” for a discussion about any concerns.
O’sullivan rejected the invitation as “there is no point” speaking to him.