Ronnie O’Sullivan faces uphill task as Mark Williams secures four-frame lead

    Ronnie O’Sullivan faces uphill task at the Crucible as Mark Williams secures four-frame advantage in World Championship quarter-final

    • Mark Williams established a commanding 6-2 lead over Ronnie O’Sullivan 
    • The Welshman is in pole position to win the World Championship quarter-final
    • O’Sullivan has been criticised by Ken Doherty after he slammed young players 

    Five-time champion Ronnie O’Sullivan faces a battle to stay in the World Championship after Mark Williams hit form to build a commanding lead at the Crucible on Monday.

    Welshman Williams, 45, seeking a fourth world title of his own, won five consecutive frames to take a 6-2 overnight advantage in the best-of-25 quarter-final. The duo shared the opening four frames before the mid-session interval, including a century from O’Sullivan. 

    But the 44-year-old was second best on the resumption of play. Williams edged a scrappy fifth frame before propelling himself into a healthy position with breaks of 72, 56 and a superb 130.

    Ronnie O’Sullivan fell four frames behind Mark Williams in World Championship quarter-final

    Earlier, O’Sullivan came under fire over his claim that the standard of snooker is so poor lower in the rankings that he would have to ‘lose an arm and a leg to fall out of the top 50’.

    Ken Doherty, the 1997 world champion, told the BBC: ‘Name another sportsman who would slag off the rest of the tour saying they are not that good. The standard is as high as ever. It may be tongue-in-cheek but it is not nice. It is derogatory. 

    ‘All of those players look up to Ronnie and he has a duty to them as an ambassador to the game. He is a hero to all those players on the tour. I don’t know whether they will still think he is a character or look up to him.’

    In the battle of qualifiers, Scot Anthony McGill looks on course for a maiden Crucible semi-final after forging a 7-1 lead over Norwegian Kurt Maflin. Their match resumes today.


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