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Daily Mirror
Daily Mirror
Fraser Watson

Ronnie O'Sullivan accused of lying by John Parrott over practice claim - 'Don't listen'

John Parrott urged snooker fans not to listen to Ronnie O'Sullivan after he secured an historic seventh world title at The Crucible on Monday night.

O'Sullivan, 46, was at his sublime best on Sunday as he opened up a 12-5 lead over Judd Trump, raising the prospect of the final being over with a full session to spare. However, Trump dispelled any notion of a procession by winning six of the first eight frames, to leave matters at 14-11.

From there though, 'The Rocket' regained control, making two 80 plus breaks to extend his lead to five frames, and effectively end the contest. At 17-11, a clearance of 85 sealed another world crown, drawing him level with the legendary Stephen Hendry.

Afterwards, an emotional O'Sullivan embraced Trump before celebrating with his family. He labelled the win the "greatest" he's had, and confirmed he would be returning in 2023 to target an unprecedented eighth title.

Despite his undoubted brilliance, O'Sullivan has always exerted an air of nonchalance away from the table. He's long claimed that he doesn't enjoy practicing, a notion that BBC pundit Parrott, himself a world champion in 1991, dismissed live on air.

"Don't listen to him saying he doesn't practice," Parrott said, following his triumph. "He is in the club grafting like a Trojan, he puts the hours in and he wants to win."

O'Sullivan and Trump embraced afterwards (PA)

Parrott, 57, also added his voice to the argument that O'Sullivan is the greatest of all time: "You will never see anyone like him again," he continued. "He's the best player I've ever seen. His cue ball control is at another level. He's on another level to anyone who has played this game."

Parrott also said the Wordsley-born star "looked the winner from the start," and added: "He is a player for all ages. He is the most talented player we've seen in the sport and this is just rewards for his talent.

"I think he's the most talented sportsman in Britain. This is Tiger Woods level. He has 21 majors, seven in all of the big ones, and plays to a level a lot of players can never aspire to."

Inevitably, O'Sullivan made headlines for his colourful antics as much as he did his scintillating play. In his first-round match over David Gilbert, he was reprimanded for making a lewd gesture after missing a simple pot.

Following his semi-final win over John Higgins, he joked he would be taking a hairdryer into the arena for the final after sitting on a wet sea t. And during the clash with Trump, he frequently argued with the match referee.

But the overriding story was his sublime play, which has now taken him to a total of 21 Triple Crown titles. He also now has the record for the most matches won in a World Snooker Championship.

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