O'Sullivan ties up Robidoux

Click to follow
The Independent Online
Ronnie O'Sullivan admitted that he felt under greater pressure than normal after beating his Canadian rival Alain Robidoux 5-4 in the last 16 of the pounds 230,000 Suntory Asian Classic in Thailand yesterday.

There has been no love lost between the pair since Robidoux accused O'Sullivan of being "disrespectful" for playing a sequence of one-handed shots during their meeting at the world championship in April.

After recording a 10-3 victory at Sheffield, O'Sullivan responded that he could beat Robidoux "one-handed" and immediately made himself a target for any subsequent re-match.

"It was a funny game and I felt strange because of what happened at Sheffield," said O'Sullivan, who played every shot conventionally yet still came within three pots of defeat.

O'Sullivan put together breaks of 86, 56 and 94 on the way to building a 4-2 lead but Robidoux stole the seventh frame on the black before drawing level at 4-4.

The deciding frame came down to the colours before a relieved O'Sullivan potted blue and pink to fall over the line.

"You've got to look at things in a positive way. I played well below my best and still won so that's got to be regarded as a plus," said O'Sullivan, who now faces Peter Ebdon in the quarter-finals.

Ebdon, who had a 5-1 victory over the Welsh left-hander Mark Williams, needs to negotiate one more round to overtake John Higgins into second place in the provisional rankings.