WORLD SNOOKER

WORLD SNOOKER: O’SULLIVAN 5-4 TRUMP (10-6)

WORLD SNOOKER: It’s a barrage of errors from both so far tonight. Ronnie catches the blue first when playing safe before Judd gets in but misses a routine yellow when coming back down the table. In riposte, Ronnie drops a red in but leaves the cue in the center of the pack, and can only play a containing safety off the black. They’re both a bit cold here, and then Judd plays a shocker of safety that sees the white hit multiple reds and stay at the south of the table. Ronnie is in, and it’s a decent chance to rack points up here.

O’SULLIVAN 5-4 TRUMP (9-0)

Judd gives up the first points, missing two thin contact safety shots and being warned by Olivier that he’ll lob the frame if he misses again. Eventually, he plays on a red near the black on the bottom cushion, which leaves Ronnie a red to the left middle. Ronnie dumps it in but can’t pot the black; after nearly 18 minutes both players agree on a re-rack just to end this tedium. Once more!

O’SULLIVAN 5-4 TRUMP (0-0)

A prolonged safety exchange opens frame 10, with neither player giving an inch and all 15 reds dragged over to the bottom right of the table. It’s very hard to see how this deadlock will be broken, but it’s undeniably absorbing. You might want to brew up for this one.

O’SULLIVAN 5-4 TRUMP

There’s one of them, as Judd fails to escape from canny snooker by O’Sullivan and almost leaves a free ball. Ronnie can’t land another though and Judd picks off the final red, before clearing up to the pink to seal the frame.

O’SULLIVAN 5-3 TRUMP (32-73)

Judd leaves the frame ball red to the bottom right, but it’s an awkward cut; he drops it in any way, followed by the yellow, but he can’t drop in the final red on the table. Ronnie returns to the table needing two games of snooker.

O’SULLIVAN 5-3 TRUMP (32-54)

It’s a pit-a-pat break for Judd, who rattles in a quick half-ton and has the remaining four reds in the wide open. He’s cueing very smoothly here and should take this out in one visit.

O’SULLIVAN 5-3 TRUMP (32-0)

We’re off; then we quickly have a stalemate and a re-rack, and as they say in sports, we go again. Judd goes in-off immediately after missing a long red, and not only that he’s busted the pack wide open. From the D, Ronnie has a gimme; it looks like big trouble for Judd until Ronnie misses a red to the right middle and he’s handed over a huge chance here.

WORLD SNOOKER Championship 2022: Ronnie O’Sullivan & Judd Trump meet in ‘dream’ final

WORLD SNOOKER: LET’S GO

The Crucible is absolutely rocking as Rob Walker brings both players into the arena. We’ve got nine frames tonight, let’s get it happening.

THAT BROUHAHA

We’re hearing from Radzi in the studio that Olivier Marteel gave Ronnie an official warning for an alleged hand gesture. Judd wasn’t happy with the timing of said warning and asked Olivier why he didn’t leave it until the end of the session. Anyway, that hopefully clears it all up. Let’s press on!

RECAP

Ronnie bossed the first session for the most part, and will be narked at the fact that he didn’t convert 5-1 into something more emphatic; he’d won five on the bike at that point and had Judd on the ropes. Judd blagged two when he was struggling to beat Mark Williams though, and picked off the final pair of frames in the afternoon to make his world look a whole load brighter. Ronnie, who’d had a lengthy back and forth with referee Olivier Marteel about replacing the white earlier in the day, clashed with him again towards the end of a final frame in which Ronnie blew a great chance to nick it and lead 6-2. That’s where we left it, and where we’ll pick it up again shortly.

WE’RE BACK

WORLD SNOOKER: Let’s all calm down a bit, shall we? It’s time for the evening session. There was a fractious end to the afternoon’s play but hopefully, a brew and a biscuit have chilled everyone out a little. This is a big, big deal for Ronnie and Judd, obviously, but it’s also a huge occasion for referee Olivier Martel. The stakes are high; I’m always on edge just watching a world final so I can’t even comprehend what it’s like being one of the three people striding around the table.

Eyes down for the evening session then, in a beautifully poised final at the Crucible.

RONNIE O’SULLIVAN LEADS JUDD TRUMP

WORLD SNOOKER: Ronnie left the arena without shaking hands with Olivier Martel, Judd did and was laughing as he did so. I think he was quite taken aback by all that, but the upshot is he mopped up at the end and closed the gap in a session in which he was largely outplayed. After the match, Rachel Casey grabs a quick interview with Ronnie in his dressing room, who won’t go into the incident but says Marteel: ‘seems to be looking for trouble, I just get a vibe from the guy.’

We’ll be back from 6.45 pm BST to see what this final throws up next.

WORLD SNOOKER CHAMPIONSHIP FINAL LIVE SCORES – RONNIE O’SULLIVAN TAKES ON JUDD TRUMP FOR CRUCIBLE GLORY

O’SULLIVAN 5-3 TRUMP

WORLD SNOOKER: That documentary that Ronnie has been wired up for will have some pretty lively material. Judd composes himself well and clears up to the pink to take the frame. He’s done well there because there’s quite the atmosphere after that exchange between Ronnie and Olivier. We’re still none the wiser as to what happened there and the players leave, Ronnie with a face like thunder. At one point in that exchange, he said to Marteel ‘you saw nothing.’ It’ll come out in the wash I’m sure, but what a dramatic end to a fascinating session. It’s been overshadowed somewhat, but Judd’s pulled the last two out of the bag to trail by two tonight.

O’SULLIVAN 5-2 TRUMP (50-59)

WORLD SNOOKER: Judd can’t find the angle to bring the final red away from the black, so banks what points he can and plays a game of snooker. Ronnie can’t connect, missing the red completely and leaving a free ball. Trump tries to cut in a difficult black for a point, but can’t drop it into the bottom left. That leaves Ronnie a look at a cut on that final red…and it’s in! There’s a chance to nick the frame, but he snookers himself behind the blue! Oh, my word. Ronnie blasts at the yellow off two cushions, largely in frustration I think, and hits the black; I’m not sure what happens then, but referee Olivier Marteel goes over to Ronnie in his chair and whispers some kind of warning to him? Ronnie is furious, telling Marteel to check the camera, pointing at him and saying ‘Don’t start.’ Wow. What’s gone on there?

Judd isn’t happy either, complaining about Marteel breaking his rhythm, but if he clears to the blue here he’ll take the frame.

O’SULLIVAN 5-2 TRUMP (42-28)

It’s 41 for Ronnie and no more, as an attempt to open four reds near the pink spot doesn’t work out and he plays safe to balk. A superb safety in response from Trump snookers Ronnie on all six remaining reds and earns ten in fouls from two attempts by Ronnie at a glancing, two-cushion escape. The latter effort catches the pink and opens up the path for a plant to the bottom left. Judd fires it, comes back down the table off the green, and he can nick this.

O’SULLIVAN 5-2 TRUMP (14-7)

Judd clips in a long red to start frame eight, but in trying to open the pack off the blue he catches the side of it, leaving only a cut back on a red to the bottom right to keep going. He glides it in beautifully, coming across the table and around the back of the black to set up a chance. Just as he seems to be gaining momentum them, fortune boots him in the teeth; a heavy contact throws the black offline and he misses the pot. Ronnie can only get a solitary red down in response though but has a better look now as Judd misses a long red to the bottom right, and leaves a simple starter to the same pocket. Ronnie snicks it in so thin that he only leaves a long-ish brown to yellow pocket to keep going, but he booms it is followed by a cut back on red to the middle, and he’s in.

O’SULLIVAN 5-2 TRUMP

We don’t get the three figures, but a 97 from Judd takes a slice off Ronnie’s lead.

O’SULLIVAN 5-1 TRUMP (0-69)

A tough cut back to the bottom left is a frame ball for Judd, and he rolls it is followed by an emphatic green that ends the argument in this one. Judd needed this, and we’ve got a big final frame of the session incoming.

O’SULLIVAN 5-1 TRUMP (0-51)

Judd rolls in a pink to reach his half-century, just about staying on his next red as he does so. There are a few nervy shots but this is a gutsy effort given how this session has panned out so far.

O’SULLIVAN 5-1 TRUMP (0-30)

Judd gets a good look at a long red to start frame seven. He drills it in, but lands the white on the left rail and plays safe back to balk thereafter. It’s not been running for him, but it is now as he fires in a red that Ronnie leaves over the bottom right, trusting to luck for position and then getting it on the black. It’s a great chance, and he’ll feel a whole lot better about things if he can convert it. Judd’s banked 29 and counting so far.

Ronnie O’Sullivan argues with a referee in the WORLD SNOOKER Championship final

  • ‘You try it then!’

O’SULLIVAN 5-1 TRUMP

As soon as the pack was spread open on 26, this was signposted. John Higgins called Ronnie ‘lethal’ in the balls yesterday, and there’s no let-up here. Ronnie banks a century with a 105, a record 14th in a Crucible campaign for him, and he’s now won five on the spin. It’s a long match, but these are worrying signs for Judd, who registered a good break-in frame one but has been badly off the boil since. He could do with one of these next two at least.

O’SULLIVAN 4-1 TRUMP (51-0)

It’s another half-century for Ronnie as he glides a blue into the right middle. I wonder how much Judd is feeling not just his 33-frame epic with Williams, but that calamitous loss of frame four when he handed it to Ronnie on multiple occasions. 5-1 looks nailed on here, and Judd needs to find something from somewhere in this session.

O’SULLIVAN 4-1 TRUMP (26-0)

The determination in Ronnie is almost palpable. He thunders in a long red to start frame six, followed by a brown into the left middle to come back down the table. Before long he’s opened the pack, jabbed in a short-range red to the bottom left and another tickle of the pack after stunning a red into the bottom left has blown this frame wide open for him. This is Ronnie in his element, and all Judd can do for the moment is watch and hope.

O’SULLIVAN 4-1 TRUMP

A 40 from Ronnie does it, as Judd shows no interest in chasing four games of snooker. That’s four in a row from Ronnie, who is starting to bully an under-par Judd here.

O’SULLIVAN 3-1 TRUMP (53-13)

Ronnie opens the frame right up by splitting the remaining reds off the green, and he’s just about on one to the bottom right. That goes, and Judd will be fearing the worst as Ronnie hasn’t often failed to convert these in Sheffield this year. He reaches 30 with a sweet blue from mid-range to the green pocket and is only a few balls away now.

O’SULLIVAN 3-1 TRUMP (23-13)

Judd’s been a bit lost in this frame, but bullets in a long red to the bottom left to get himself going and he’s on the yellow. It needs a number of tough recovery pots just to make 13 before he fails to cut a tough red to the left middle. That’s left Ronnie one to the same pocket, which he drops in delicately to land on the pink.

O’SULLIVAN 3-1 TRUMP (22-0)

We’re back, and it’s an immediate chance for Ronnie as Judd almost flukes a red into the bottom left from safety but leaves it in the jaws. Ronnie picks it off and comes back up for the blue. He makes 18, before trying to force position from a bullet straight red and rattling it out of the bottom right. It’s the only loose red on the table and both players miss a succession of attempted pots on it. Ronnie eventually clips it in and opens the pack off the green, but lands on nothing.

O’SULLIVAN 3-1 TRUMP

Oh my word, have a look at this – Judd leaves the black tight to the left rail, and Ronnie fires in a cocked hat double off three cushions to the left middle and he’s won the frame!

What a sensational way to end the session, how on earth has Ronnie nicked that one. We’ll be back in 15 minutes for more of a final that is already shaping up to be all we hoped.

O’SULLIVAN 2-1 TRUMP (66-66)

Ronnie takes the brown for three points, but can’t land on the green. These next five balls are the most significant of the match so far. Eventually, the advantage falls to Judd as Ronnie doubles the green but goes in-off; it’s the green off its spot from the Das frame ball…and Judd rolls it out of the knuckles! Oh my. Ronnie can force a respotted black here if he can dish. It needs a thin cut on the brown with the rest and a tricky blue to the right middle, but he’s dropped it in to clear up, and back comes the black! Judd will absolutely kick himself if he loses this one.

O’SULLIVAN 2-1 TRUMP (38-62)

Well, this might be interesting. Judd makes 52 to leave Ronnie needing a game of snooker, but can’t pot the final red and leaves it in the jaws of the bottom right. Ronnie will go for this, and pots red-pink before going for the snooker on the yellow. It’s a poor effort, but Judd can’t force the yellow into its own pocket and leaves it in the jaws again. Ronnie drops it in and then tucks the white tight in behind the brown. Judd tries to escape off two cushions, misses, and he’s left a free ball. That’s a disaster, and the frame is back on.

O’SULLIVAN 2-1 TRUMP (25-43)

For the first time in serious play today, Ronnie loses position and can’t retrieve it; he misses a green to its own pocket and Judd is just about on a red, which he just about pots with swerving and he can counter. He adds 27, loses position slightly on the pink but then recovers with a wonderful shot around the angles off four cushions to land on his next red. That’s a beauty, and the frame is at his mercy.

O’SULLIVAN 2-1 TRUMP (19-10)

After some tap and nudge safety that briefly looks like forcing a re-rack, Judd opens the pack but catches it thick, leaving three reds over pockets. Ronnie stuns one into the bottom left and then clatters a long blue into the green pocket. What a stunning shot, and he’s off and running again.

O’SULLIVAN 2-1 TRUMP (0-10)

Larks here at the start of frame four, as Judd snookers Ronnie on everything bar a chance of a faint flick on a red to the right of the pack. Before he plays it Ronnie checks with Judd to agree that he can see it, just in case he fails to connect. Judd agrees, and Ronnie does miss it; there follows a giggling exchange as referee Olivier Martel tries to replace the white, and Ronnie is unhappy with the position of it. After some three minutes of back and forth, and Judd’s intervention, all sides are happy and Ronnie flicks the outside of the red to huge cheers. LOL, as I believe young folk say on the internet. Ronnie then misses a long red to the bottom left a few shots later, and he’s left one for Judd who can only take red-blue before having to play safe.

WORLD SNOOKER CHAMPIONSHIP 2022 – RONNIE O’SULLIVAN COMPLETES WIN OVER JOHN HIGGINS TO SET UP FINAL WITH JUDD TRUMP

O’SULLIVAN 2-1 TRUMP

Judd can’t drop in a red to the bottom left, and with one waiting for Ronnie over the right middle this one should be over, but Ronnie takes only a yellow thereafter. Judd keeps going but misses the black after his first red and that will be that. A quick red-blue-red from Ronnie puts it to bed.

O’SULLIVAN 1-1 TRUMP (68-0)

It’s another half-century for Ronnie, who has hit some groove here. With positional play under control now he takes the black to move 68 ahead with 67 on, but a split on the final five reds only leaves a tough red to the yellow pocket and he can’t pot it.

O’SULLIVAN 1-1 TRUMP (26-0)

A safety from Judd is short of the pace but sees the red pull up right in front of the brown. Ronnie manages to cue around it and float a lovely red into the bottom left. He then pots the blue but blocks his path to a red to the bottom left with the pack. No matter though, as he flukes – at least I think he does – a three-ball plant that sends that red into the pocket. A tough brown to the right middle follows, he soon opens the pack and then drops in an excellent pink long to the yellow pocket. He’s riding his luck for position here, but this is thrilling stuff. And the look on his boat tells you he is fully zoned into this match.

O’SULLIVAN 1-1 TRUMP

The frame is quickly put to bed, and it’s time for a landmark; Ronnie makes his 200th century in the World Championship, what a staggering feat that is. It’s also his 13th of this tournament, equalling his best-ever tally in a Crucible campaign. The break ends on 120, and Ronnie gets a thunderous round of applause.

WORLD SNOOKER Championship 2022: Ronnie O’Sullivan books final place against Judd Trump

O’SULLIVAN 0-1 TRUMP (50-0)

Ronnie reaches a half-century, and as has been said many times it really is mesmerizing watching him work out a break. His touch and focus both look bang on here, just as Judd’s did in frame one. Good signs here that we’re in for a high-quality final.

O’SULLIVAN 0-1 TRUMP (22-0)

Here’s a chance for Ronnie to hit back, as Judd misses a long one to the bottom right and gifts Ronnie an easy starter. He’s into the pack early, affecting a good split, and two good recovery shots on the spin on pink and a red keep his break going. If he can clear a path for the black to both corners, he’ll be in business.

O’SULLIVAN 0-1 TRUMP

It’s a break of 72 from Judd to take the first frame.

O’SULLIVAN 0-0 TRUMP (0-67)

The plant had split everything right open, and Judd quickly tidies up 41 and counting, which has put the frame out of Ronnie’s reach. Early days, but advantage Judd.

O’SULLIVAN 0-0 TRUMP (0-27)

Another poor safety from Ronnie leaves Judd an easy starter, but it’s so straight he has no chance to bring out pink or black which are currently tied up. Instead, Judd uses his immense cue power to force the white up towards the blue. He can only make six though before missing a red to the bottom left. Neither player has really settled yet, but Judd might now – he’s just picked out a superb plant on a red to the bottom right and he’s on the green.

O’SULLIVAN 0-0 TRUMP (0-20)

A misjudged safety from Ronnie leaves a red long to the bottom right. Judd confidently drops it in and holds for the blue. Thereafter he mops up what’s in the open, but in going into the pack off the blue the split doesn’t leave him anything to go at, so a safety ensues.

Snooker legend Terry Griffiths lost after unknowingly given spliff by Jimmy White

HERE WE GO

Our MC Rob Walker announces the players into a Crucible Theatre that is absolutely jumping. It’s potentially a 35-frame slog, and here come eight of them.

WHERE’S YOUR MONEY?

The consensus seems to be that Ronnie is a slight favorite today. While he has been in the better form of the two, Judd has been winning without tapping into his best game so far. Few players in the game could have withstood that barrage from Mark Williams in the last two sessions of their semi-final, but Judd did and he’ll be right up for this.

JUGGERNAUT

As relentless as Judd has been in recent years, the 2021-22 season has seen him in slightly less menacing form than the previous three seasons. That ‘weaker’ season included victory at the Champion of Champions and the Turkish Masters, but he knows that to move up the list of all-time greats he has to produce more in the Triple Crown events. If he can win here, he’ll be just the seventh man to win the world title at the Crucible more than once. One interesting factor in the first session today is how much that epic semi-final victory over Higgins yesterday might have taken out of him.

ROCKET

WORLD SNOOKER: What a run to the final it’s been for Ronnie. He’s beaten David Gilbert 10-5, Mark Allen 13-4, Stephen Maguire 13-5, and yesterday put John Higgins away 17-11. It’s as good as he’s looked at the Crucible since 2012-14 when he came so close to pulling off three titles in a row. Everything about Ronnie’s game is so compact at the moment and, as Higgins said last night, he’s been lethal when he gets in. He wants that seventh world gong badly, and you can see there’s something different in him this year.

WORLD SNOOKER: Catch-up: Concluding sessions of World Championship semi-finals

GOOD AFTERNOON!

WORLD SNOOKER: Welcome back to the Crucible. After 15 days of competition, 561 frames, and 103-century breaks, it all comes down to this: Ronnie O’Sullivan takes on Judd Trump in the final of the 2022 World Snooker Championship.

What a match this promises to be. There are so many good players in the world right now that any combination of John Higgins, Mark Williams, Mark Selby, Neil Robertson, Shaun Murphy, Zhao Xintong, Kyren Wilson, Luca Brecel, Mark Allen, or Yan Bingtao – to name just ten – would have had us rubbing our hands, but let’s not deny what we have here; it’s a showdown we’ve been waiting for, the big one at The Big One.

It’s pointless rattling through Ronnie O’Sullivan’s CV again. For those that know – and I’m counting in that list Stephen Hendry and John Higgins, who’ve both said as much – he’s the greatest player the game has ever seen. The point where said greatness was cloaked in the title The Most Naturally Talented Player Ever To Pick Up A Cue while his trophy-winning record caught up has long been surpassed. If he wins here it’ll be world title number seven, drawing him level with Hendry in the modern era.

As for Judd, this is his third final at the Crucible and his first since winning his only world title in 2019. That was a catalyzing victory in what’s been a devastating four-season run, in which he’s won 15 ranking event titles plus the prestigious Champion of Champions and the Masters. Despite that blizzard of victories, he hasn’t landed a Triple Crown event since that victory at the Crucible three years ago. To get to the very top table in the pantheon of greats he still has work to do, and today is a huge staging post on that trip for him.

Add to all of this the occasional sparks and remarks between the two, a major final record that reads 7-3 in Trump’s favor, and the only meeting over a comparable distance seeing Ronnie serve Judd 17-11 in the 2013 semi-finals at the Crucible, then you have yourself something to really savor.

This could be a final for the ages, and it’s incoming.

 

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