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Masters Snooker

Favourite O’Sullivan into Masters semi-final

Published on January 11, 2024
Updated on January 15, 2024
Written by Chris

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Favourite O’Sullivan into Masters semi-final
  • O’Sullivan on course for eighth Masters
  • Favourite reaches 15th Masters semi
  • The Rocket labels his performance as “awful” despite win

Ronnie O’Sullivan, aiming for his eighth Masters crown, secured a 6-3 victory over Barry Hawkins, though he labelled his own performance as “awful.” Despite being 3-2 down at one point, O’Sullivan managed to rally and reach his 15th Masters semi-final at Alexandra Palace.

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Below par O’Sullivan progresses

Expressing gratitude for the win, O’Sullivan admitted feeling fortunate and believed he had dragged Hawkins down to his own level of play. In a post-match interview, he stated, “It’s a funny old game,” emphasising the unpredictable nature of snooker. O’Sullivan also reflected on the absence of pressure affecting his motivation, suggesting that he performs better under certain expectations.

The match witnessed a mix of strong and subpar performances from both players. O’Sullivan secured the opening frame with an 88 break, but Hawkins responded with notable runs, taking a 3-2 lead. However, Hawkins missed opportunities to extend his advantage, allowing O’Sullivan to capitalise on mistakes and clinch the victory with breaks of 77 and 60.

O’Sullivan criticised the overall snooker standard, deeming it “the most awful standard of snooker.” He acknowledged his peculiar ability to impact certain opponents, stating that if he plays poorly, they tend to perform even worse.

Despite the defeat, Hawkins acknowledged his own lapses in concentration and expressed no complaints about the outcome. His previous history against O’Sullivan, including a 10-1 defeat in the 2017 Masters final, seemed to influence the expectations for their encounter.

With this win, O’Sullivan advances to the semi-final, where he will face either Shaun Murphy or Jack Lisowski. The victory brings him closer to a record-extending eighth Masters title and the coveted £250,000 first prize.

Masters betting

At the time of writing O’Sullivan is the 11/8 favourite with Betway, ahead of Judd Trump 3/1 and Mark Selby 11/2.

Check out the best betting sites in the UK and the best bookies for snooker and for the Masters with before making your picks.

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Chris is a former athlete and a qualified PE teacher. He is a keen football fan, watching many matches at different levels throughout the season, and enjoys following many different sports. With betting and sports sites, he has a keen eye for detail and can to highlight positives and negatives for users. His experience in sport as a performer, teacher, writer and fan allows him to see things from many different perspectives. Editorial Promise