Snooker: Sport lacks wow factor, admits Rocket

Ronnie O'Sullivan holds the trophy after winning the final match during the Betfair World Championships at the Crucible, Sheffield. Picture: Anna Gowthorpe/PA Wire
Ronnie O'Sullivan holds the trophy after winning the final match during the Betfair World Championships at the Crucible, Sheffield. Picture: Anna Gowthorpe/PA Wire
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World champion Ronnie O’Sullivan feels snooker needs another “crank” like him to give the sport some much-needed pizzazz.

The ‘Rocket’ blew away all before him – despite having had a 12-month break - to claim a fifth Betfair.com World Championship crown at the Crucible Theatre in Sheffield on Monday night.

But the game’s box office star, who pocketed a £250,000 first prize for his success at the annual 17-day event, said: “The standard is great out there, looking at the way Barry played against me in the final.

“But what you are lacking is someone that adds a bit of pizzazz, every sport needs someone like your Alex Higgins or your Eric Cantona, a real character.

“They are all nice guys and good boys but it just needs someone to get in there. Some players are trying to do it, but it’s not natural.

“There are some other players that are not too complimentary and show their true colours in some ways – not in a horrible way, but when you’re on the circuit you can’t be best mates all the time.

“I don’t try at all, I am a bit off-key at times but it is really me, I am like that and do my thing but people like that.

“A lot of people are trying to put on an act and people see through it and don’t buy it. You all need another crank to come along.”

O’Sullivan was rarely troubled as he romped to an 18-12 victory over Barry Hawkins in this year’s best-of-35 frame final.

His hardest test arguably came against Judd Trump, one of the players tipped to dominate the sport over the next few years.

If he quit the Chigwell professional believes it is time for someone else to pick up the mantle he has left.

“Ambassador? I think I have represented the sport over the last 17 days, it has been shown all round the world and I have shown I love the game,” added O’Sullivan.

“Hopefully I have entertained a few people, and if things were different I would go everywhere.”