Defending champion Ronnie O’Sullivan won’t be taking anything for granted against Scottish potter Marcus Campbell in this year’s Betfair.com World Championship (20 April – 6 May) in Sheffield.
Dumbarton cueman Campbell will face the “Rocket” in the first round of snooker’s biggest tournament on Saturday at the Crucible.
But four-time world champion O’Sullivan has not played in a tournament for nearly a year and knows the pressure is on him to perform.
“Marcus is a tough player” said O’Sullivan. “I played him in Beijing last season and I was 4-2 down to him, but luckily managed to scrape over the line and win 5-4. He’s a great match player. Most players who come from Scotland are good match players. I suppose that’s just the way they’re built.
“There are no easy draws. He’s been grinding away all season, so he’s obviously coming in with a lot of snooker behind him.”
O’Sullivan has not played in a major tournament due to his self-imposed 12-month sabbatical.
But last year’s champion isn’t worried about being back in the goldfish bowl with all eyes on his long-awaited return.
“It’s like my own reality TV show,” added O’Sullivan. “I’m not one for Big Brother, But this is as near as it gets. It’s exciting for me and everybody looking in.”
First round draw: Ronnie O’Sullivan v Marcus Campbell, Ali Carter v Ben Woollaston, Stuart Bingham v Sam Baird, John Higgins v Mark Davis, Shaun Murphy v Martin Gould, Graeme Dott v Peter Ebdon, Matthew Stevens v Marco Fu, Judd Trump v Dominic Dale, Neil Robertson v Robert Milkins, Ricky Walden v Michael Holt, Mark Williams v Michael White, Stephen Maguire v Dechawat Poomjaeng, Mark Allen v Mark King, Ding Junhui v Alan McManus, Barry Hawkins v Jack Lisowski, Mark Selby v Matthew Selt.