Whether at the table or conducting an interview, Ronnie O’Sullivan is always box-office entertainment in the otherwise subdued world of professional snooker.
The 44-year-old is taking on Kyren Wilson in the World Championship finals this weekend, but his comments on snooker’s new generation are what truly captured the sporting world’s attention last week.
“If you look at me and Mark and John, the younger players coming through…they’re not that good really. Most of them might do okay as half decent amateurs,” he said.
“They are so bad, a lot of them I think ‘You’d have to lose an arm and a leg to fall outside the top 50’. That’s maybe why we are still hovering around!”
But what are the 10 greatest Ronnie quotes of all time? Daily Star Sport have drawn up a list of our favourites.
Ronnie on losing in the 2006 World Championship semi-finals
“I just kind of imploded and sabotaged it. I wanted to lose. I had a f***ing meltdown. If I’d have won that match I would have had to play Peter f***ing Ebdon for two days.”
Ronnie on playing in Crawley
“Every day in Crawley is a day lost in my life”
Ronnie on slow play
“In snooker if you’re not at the table, you’re sitting in the chair and there’s nothing you can do. You can’t get to your ball and talk to your caddy and say, ‘’He’s playing a bit slow this f***ing idiot here’. In snooker you have to sit in your chair and watch some f***ing numpty poncing about.”
Ronnie on his dream job
“My dream would probably be [to be] a property developer. I love Homes Under the Hammer.”
Ronnie on substance abuse
“I remember getting to every World Championship and thinking, ‘I can’t wait till this tournament is over ‘cos then there’s no more drug tests, I can go out and smash it’.”
Ronnie on boredom during the 2005 Grand Prix Final
“I am so peed off with the game and I am bored with it. I would rather be planting a few shrubs in the garden. Hopefully the match gets abandoned and maybe John Virgo and Willie Thorne come out and play a few trick shots. I really don’t care.”
Ronnie on winning ugly
“My hearts not been in it this year and I’ve not been playing well but I keep on winning.”
Ronnie on match-fixing
“If anyone could get away with it, I could. I could just play one-handed or left-handed, or just put a towel over my head, and pretend I was going nuts. But it’s not something I would or could do. I couldn’t live with myself; I’d feel that was robbing somebody.”
Ronnie on his legacy
“A lot of snooker players are too intense and serious. I want to be like Billy the Kid.”
Ronnie on the love of the game
“The most important thing, the biggest love of my life, is my snooker. I’ve never been so emotionally ingrained in something – in a person, an object, anything – as I have in snooker.”
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