Snooker: O'Sullivan seeks help for balance problem as White apologises for petulance

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The defending champion, Ronnie O'Sullivan, defeated qualifier Robert Milkins 13-2 with a session to spare to reach the quarter-finals of the World Championship yesterday, despite problems with his balance.

"I find it hard to walk and I'm totally out of sync," O'Sullivan said. "I was seeing a chiropractor for about a year and I'm going to see one in Sheffield who uses the same technique. There's a practice who can fit me in tomorrow [Saturday] morning. Hopefully, that will make a big difference because I feel really uncomfortable."

O'Sullivan clinched the opening frame with breaks of 58 and 41. The Chigwell professional missed a simple brown in the second, but Milkins could not capitalise and a frame-winning 77 opened O'Sullivan's lead to six frames. It was only a matter of time before he wrapped up the match.

Jimmy White's campaign was ended by the Welshman Matthew Stevens. The 24-year-old, who held a 6-2 overnight lead, dropped one frame on his way to a comfortable 13-3 win.

The day started with an apology from White following his petulant action in the final frame of Thursday night's first session. The six-time runner-up was frustrated after missing a simple shot and smashed the cue ball into the black, sending both balls spinning off the table. White conceded the frame. "I would like to apologise for the way I reacted. It was caused by sheer frustration and was completely out of character," he said.

A subdued White missed a long red at the start of the ninth frame yesterday morning. Stevens capitalised with a 91 break to open up a five-frame lead. He also won the next two frames as White struggled to find his touch. However, White produced a well-constructed break of 51 to reduce the deficit to six frames before the interval. Stevens, however, regained control in the 13th frame.

Breaks of 41 and 34 moved Stevens within three frames of victory and he won the next with a break of 105. A break of 63 then gave him a 12-3 lead. Both players squandered opportunities during the 16th frame, but Stevens held his nerve to secure the win. Stevens said: "It was a good first session, I played very well. Obviously Jimmy missed a few balls and got a little bit frustrated. He missed a brown to go 3-2 up and that was the turning point in the match."

Ken Doherty produced a brilliant comeback to move ahead in his second-round match with Mark King. The 32-year-old looked out of sorts during the morning session and deservedly trailed King 6-2. However, after a tense opening last night, Doherty slowly moved through the gears to lead 9-7, leaving the Dubliner four frames short of a quarter-final place. The match resumes this afternoon.

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