Ronnie O'Sullivan retirement verdict given ahead of Masters semi-final amid latest outburst

Ronnie O'Sullivan retirement verdict given ahead of Masters semi-final amid latest outburst

WATCH NOW: Latest sports round-up as Ronnie O'Sullivan competes at the Masters

Lewis Winter

By Lewis Winter

Published: 13/01/2024

- 09:00

The 48-year-old superstar has been moody at the Masters this week

Ronnie O'Sullivan's rivals have been warned that he is 'not going anywhere' anytime soon.

Snooker star Jimmy White claims the Rocket is playing as good as he ever has and won't be hanging up his cue yet.

O'Sullivan will take part in his 15th Masters semi-final on Saturday.

He faces Shaun Murphy at Alexandra Palace as he looks to win the tournament for a record-extending eighth time.

Ronnie O'Sullivan

Ronnie O'Sullivan won't be retiring anytime soon according to Jimmy White


O'Sullivan cut a hugely frustrated figure following his quarter-final win over Barry Hawkins on Thursday.

The 48-year-old fumed at his own performance and also criticised the London venue, claiming it makes him 'feel ill'.

O'Sullivan said: "I just don’t like this place, I find it disgusting.

"Everywhere is dirty, cold, I’m freezing. I have to sit here in my coat."

But despite his latest outburst, his close friend White believes O'Sullivan still has the passion to continue playing for the foreseeable future.

White says O'Sullivan is still at the top of his game and retirement will not be on his agenda.

He told Eurosport: "He is playing as good as ever. He is not going anywhere.

"He is the fittest guy on the tour, he practices as much as anyone.

"He is not a certainty to win this tournament, but he has a great chance.

"I would always back O'Sullivan."

O'Sullivan became professional in 1992 and has won seven World Championships since his first in 2001.

White knew of him as a youngster and has become close friends with him over the years.

The pundit has paid tribute to his longevity in the sport, adding: "I had heard bits and pieces and then I’ve seen him play.

"They asked me what I thought and I said ‘he’s a breath of fresh air, just what the game needs’.

"He’s still doing it now at the age he is now.

"He is still doing it now. Thankfully we still have Ronnie O'Sullivan as snooker needs him.


Ronnie O'Sullivan

Jimmy White says Ronnie O'Sullivan has been playing better than ever


"No one is ever bigger than the game. You had Alex Higgins before and Ronnie O’Sullivan now.

"You look at Judd Trump now, he’s amazing to watch.

"All the top players are amazing to watch, they just do it in different styles."

O'Sullivan is still the crowd favourite at any tournament he competes in.

That is especially the case whenever he plays in London.

Ronnie O'Sullivan

Ronnie O'Sullivan will compete in his 15th Masters semi-final


"The Conference Centre was where the first Masters was, it is the only tournament in London and that’s why you get these huge crowds and they love it," White said.

"He [O’Sullivan] is from London and that’s why he gets the support, and the way he plays."

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