Five-time World Champion and one of snooker's great crowd pleasers

 

DOB: 5/12/75 

 

Lives Chigwell, Essex

 

Turned Pro 1992

 

Ranking Tournament Victories 25 - UK Championship 1993, 1997, 2001, 2007; British Open 1994; Asian Classic 1996; German Open 1996; Scottish Open 1998, 2000; China Open 1999, 2000; World Championship 2001, 2004, 2008, 2012, 2013; European Open 2003; Irish Masters 2003, 2005; Welsh Open 2004, 2005; Grand Prix 2004; Northern Ireland Trophy 2008; Shanghai Masters 2009; German Masters 2012

 

World Snooker Tour prize money 2011/12 + 2012/13 seasons (ranking events / PTCs only) £606,518

 

Highest Tournament Break 147 - 11 times

 

There can be few competitors in all of sport who could take nearly a year away from meaningful action then return to win at the highest level. Yet that's exactly what Ronnie O'Sullivan did at the 2013 World Championship as he successfully defended the title, becoming the first player to win back-to-back Crucible crowns since Stephen Hendry dominated from 1992-96.

 

O'Sullivan played in only one other pro event during the 2012/13 season, losing 4-3 to Simon Bedford in the first round of a PTC in Gloucester. Yet once he arrived in Sheffield he hit the ground running and it soon became clear he was the man to beat. Victories over Marcus Campbell, Ali Carter, Stuart Bingham and Judd Trump saw O'Sullivan into the final against Barry Hawkins. And despite a brave display from his opponent who looked in with a chance at 7-7, O'Sullivan always looked in control on the second day and eventually won 18-12. He produced spells of wonderful break-building and made a record six centuries in the final.

 

The Rocket, who now has five world titles to his name, said: "Last year I came here off the back of two lean years and people were writing me off. At times I felt I played some of the best snooker I had ever played and it was the same again this year. Having worked with (psychiatrist) Steve Peters I was able to hold my emotions a lot more than before. In the final I had everything to lose and nothing to gain. I know how good Barry is - to the outside world they think I should never lose but on the snooker circuit everybody knows how good Barry is."

 

O'Sullivan's 2012 World title saw him knock out three former World Champions in Peter Ebdon, Mark Williams and Neil Robertson to get to the semi-finals.  He went on to beat Matthew Stevens 17-10 to reach the final before a comfortable 18-11 victory over Ali Carter.

 

"It's just about staying in control of your emotions and not getting too carried away. I made sure I wasn't being too critical of myself if things didn't go well. It's hard to do that for 17 days. It's an absolute marathon. I never doubted myself that I could win another tournament, but to win another world title I did question that," he said.

 

O'Sullivan first won the world title in 2001 when he beat John Higgins 18-14 and took his second crown in 2004 when he easily saw off Graeme Dott 18-8.

 

The 2007/08 season was arguably the best of O'Sullivan's career as he won the UK Championship as well as his third World Championship with an 18-8 defeat of Ali Carter.

 

O'Sullivan's fast, attacking style and charismatic personality have made him snooker's most popular player across the globe.

 

Blessed with the rare gift of being able to play to a high standard both left-handed and right-handed, he made the fastest 147 on record at the 1997 World Championship, a blur of potting which lasted 5 minutes and 20 seconds.

 

In a match against Carter at the 2007 Northern Ireland Trophy, O'Sullivan became the first player ever to make five centuries (including a 147) in a ranking event best-of-nine match, winning the game 5-2.

 

In total he has made 11 maximum breaks, a record he shares with Stephen Hendry.

 

Away from snooker, he is dedicated to long distance running, a pastime which he believes has helped him enormously in his battle against depression.

 

His friends in the showbiz world include artist Damien Hirst and Kasabian's Serge Pizzorno.

 

O'Sullivan has a daughter called Lily, born in February 2006, and a son called Ronnie born in June 2007.