Snooker: O'Sullivan warned in defeat

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The Independent Online

Ronnie O'Sullivan suffered a shock 9-8 defeat by Mark King, the world No 20, on the first day of the Travis Perkins UK Championship at York and left himself liable to disciplinary action into the bargain.

Such an outcome looked unlikely when the world No 1 led 5-3 at lunch but he lost the first three frames of the evening, conceding the last of these when still arithmetically able to win the frame.

Alan Chamberlain, the referee, warned O'Sullivan that this contravened the tighter regulations in this regard that the World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association have introduced, and spoke to him again after he had sat in the non-striker's chair with a towel over his head.

"When you see Ronnie do things like that, you know you've got under his skin," King said.

This behaviour, plus his refusal to attend the mandatory post-match press conference, renders O'Sullivan liable to disciplinary action.

O'Sullivan did level at 6-6 and again, from two down with three to play, at 8-8 but King amd a key break of 46 and was always in control of the decider.

Shaun Murphy, the world champion, led Nigel Bond 5-2 but trailed 7-6 before three strong frames carried him to a 9-7 victory.