After 30 Years An Amateur, Lilley Finally Turns Pro!

Rocket Flies Into Final

ronnie-1Ronnie O’Sullivan produced a virtuoso performance in his last four match with Neil Robertson, winning 6-0 to reach the European Masters final in Bucharest.

Victory on Sunday would give O’Sullivan the 29th ranking title of his career which would put him ahead of John Higgins and Steve Davis on the all-time list, behind only Stephen Hendry who has 36.

In what was a star studded Saturday line up at the Circul Globus, Judd Trump defeated Mark Selby in the afternoon match to clinch the first place in tomorrow’s final.

The evening game between world number seven Robertson and the five-time World Champion O’Sullivan promised to be a tight encounter. Instead what was produced was a dominant masterclass from the Rocket.

O’Sullivan came out of the traps quickly with two magnificent 118 and 79 breaks, to go 2-0 ahead.

Robertson’s performance was hallmarked by some uncharacteristic misses and a few unlucky rolls of the ball.

In a tight third frame, which the Australian looked likely to snatch, he jawed a relatively straightforward green to the middle which left O’Sullivan with a chance from middle range. He swallowed it up and cleared to deliver a hammer blow and take the frame on the black.

The 40-year-old O’Sullivan was equally ruthless in the following frame. He made an effortless contribution of 92 after Robertson had missed when among the reds and went into the mid-session interval 4-0 up.

When the players returned, the Rocket was at his opportunistic best once more. After making the opening red, Robertson smashed the pack open from the blue, only to sink a red and hand O’Sullivan a return to the table. He took advantage and made 63 to rack up his fifth frame in a row.

It wasn’t long before the game was over, another sublime run of 96 from O’Sullivan saw him progress with a 6-0 win in just under one and a quarter hours.

“For me to get a result like that against Neil is quite amazing,” said O’Sullivan. “I feel a bit more into the match zone. Even if I’m not playing well, I still feel I can compete and not get totally thrown out of the match. I feel a bit sharper in that way but there’s still a long way to go.

“I’ve started practising a lot more with Judd. I think he’s got the talent to probably not dominate snooker, but to be the best in the world.  He’s got age on his side. If me and him can practise a bit more he’ll definitely benefit from that.

“I’m 40 now and I’m just enjoying every tournament and every year I get. I’ve maybe got three or four years competing. I’m not saying I’ll be the best player in the world, but I still think I can nick a few tournaments.”