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World of Sport

09th Dec 2021

Ronnie O’Sullivan responds after rival says his comments about snooker are a “disgrace”

Robert Redmond

“I think it was terrible of Ronnie saying that, he should know better.”

John Higgins has criticised Ronnie O’Sullivan for the snooker player’s comments about the sport.

Following a victory at the Scottish Open, O’Sullivan said he would not like his children to play the sport professionally.

Higgins hit back at the six-time world champion and said Ronnie’s comments were “terrible” given his status in the sport.

Ronnie O’Sullivan.

“I’ll be honest with you, I would not let my son play snooker so maybe it is a good thing there isn’t the opportunity for him to play snooker,” O’Sullivan said after his victory over Michael Georgiou.

“I’d rather he played golf, football, tennis. I’d rather he played curling. Personally, if I had a child [that wanted to play snooker] I would not want him to play snooker, I really wouldn’t.

“Maybe 20-25 years ago it was a sexy sport but it has kind of fallen behind to other sports.

“If you have a child you’d want them to get into a sport like tennis, like Emma Raducanu, she’s doing fantastic.

“You look at the golfers like Rory McIlroy and the footballers, it’s just lovely sports to be in.

“It’s just timing I suppose. Maybe in another 25-30 years, snooker might be back on top but at the moment I’d be like, ‘go and get a job mate, forget playing snooker’.”


Higgins is also competing at the tournament and, following his win over Noppon Saengkham, criticised O’Sullivan’s comments.

“I heard Ronnie, which I thought it was a disgrace what he was saying, that he’d be saying to young kids ‘don’t play snooker’,” the four-time world champion told Eurosport.

“I thought that was dreadful for someone as good as that to sit there and say that.

“I think it was terrible of Ronnie saying that, he should know better.”

O’Sullivan responds to Huigg

O’Sullivan beat Liang Wenbo 4-3 in his round of 32 match at the tournament and was given the chance to respond to Higgins’ comments. The 46-year-old, however, said he no longer holds any opinions about the sport.

“I’m not having any opinions,” he told Eurosport after the match.

“I gave my opinion yesterday and I wish I hadn’t. I’m not saying nothing. I don’t want to get involved.

“I’m really not interested. I’m really detached and when I say something I wonder ‘why do I bother?’

“I’d rather not. Let the players get their little players union together. They have to stick together and if they want changes then they have to do it in unison. Count me out.

“Those days are gone for me. Count me out. I’d rather sit on the fence and enjoy the moments of playing and every part of it.”

O’Sullivan will play Jamie Jones in the last-16 of the Scottish Open. Higgins, meanwhile, will play Ryan Day in his last 32 match. The pair could meet at the quarter-finals stage of the tournament.