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Ronnie O’Sullivan: I would have to lose an arm and a leg to fall out of top 50

The 44-year-old will face Mark Williams in the World Championship quarter-finals after beating Ding Junhui.

O’Sullivan has repeatedly referred to lower-ranked players as “numpties”.
O’Sullivan has repeatedly referred to lower-ranked players as “numpties”.

RONNIE O’SULLIVAN LAUNCHED a savage attack on snooker’s next generation after beating Ding Junhui to book a World Championship quarter-final clash against fellow veteran Mark Williams.

After claiming a 13-10 win in a session which saw seven consecutive half-century breaks, O’Sullivan insisted the standard is so bad he would have to “lose an arm and a leg” to slip down the rankings.

O’Sullivan, 44, told the BBC: “If you look at the younger players coming through, they’re not that good really.

“Most of them would do well as half-decent amateurs, or not even amateurs they’re so bad a lot of them.

“A lot of them you see now, you think, cor, I’ve probably got to lose an arm and a leg to fall outside the top 50. So that’s why we’re hovering around – because of how poor it is down that end.”

O’Sullivan, who has repeatedly referred to lower-ranked players as “numpties”, narrowly missed back-to-back centuries as he rounded off victory with breaks of 117 and 93.

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He added: “When you’re younger you have all the hunger and desire but at some point you have to try to get yourself motivated, whether that’s taking the pressure off or getting another hobby or job.

“But while I’m still playing snooker I want to enjoy it. Whether I win or lose is kind of irrelevant at this stage of my career.”

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