Snooker: White's 'B-Game' is enough to beat Bond

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The Independent Online

Jimmy White wasted little time in dispensing with Nigel Bond last night as he secured his first world ranking semi-final place for nearly three years at the UK Championship in York.

White, who led 5-3 after the first session of play courtesy of six 50-plus breaks, was swiftly back into the groove. The 41-year-old will now meet Matthew Stevens, who defeated Paul Hunter 9-3 in the other quarter-final.

"I was fairly solid. I didn't score that heavily, but my important pots were good," White said. "I'm playing my B-game at the moment. I'm not firing on all cylinders. It will be nice to have a day off and then come back and play well against Matthew."

A scrappy ninth frame was quickly put to bed as breaks of 73 and 47 followed to leave Bond requiring something special to snatch a victory.

It was not to be, and Bond lost the last frame as White knuckled down with stubborn breaks of 35 and 20 to clinch a well-earned victory.

Meanwhile, Ronnie O'Sullivan suggested he might seek special dispensation from the game's governing body to protect his elevated world ranking should he take time out from snooker in the new year.

"There's a lot of pain and anger going on in my life that I'm trying to deal with but I'm really struggling," said O'Sullivan, after beating Alan McManus 9-5 to reach the the UK Championships quarter-finals in York. "A lot of it has to do with my dad [a convicted murderer]; a lot of it has to do with my mum. I feel I am carrying it about like a rucksack and it's weighing me down. If the Board don't want to do a deal I've got a bigger decision to make."