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Ronnie O'Sullivan says he is not the greatest snooker player of all time as he targets eighth world title

Is Ronnie O'Sullivan the best snooker player of all time? "Statistically I suppose I am but I don't regard myself as the greatest" - Rocket begins his bid for an outright record eighth Crucible crown against Welsh qualifier Jackson Page on Wednesday afternoon

Cazoo World Snooker Championship 2023 - Day 11 - The Crucible
Ronnie O'Sullivan in action against Luca Brecel (not pictured) on day eleven of the Cazoo World Snooker Championship at the Crucible Theatre, Sheffield. Picture date: Tuesday April 25, 2023.
Image: Ronnie O'Sullivan is a seven-time world champion, winning his most recent Crucible title in 2022

Ronnie O'Sullivan does not believe he is the greatest snooker player of all time as he looks to claim an outright record eighth World Championship title.

O'Sullivan is tied with Stephen Hendry on seven Crucible crowns after his most recent victory in 2022 - one ahead of Steve Davis and Ray Reardon - and has won the most ranking titles (41) of any player.

The 48-year-old secured his eighth Masters and UK Championship titles earlier this season.

Ronnie O'Sullivan won The Masters earlier this year to go with his UK Championship victory... can he now add a record eighth World Snooker Championship title?
Image: O'Sullivan plays Jackson Page in the first round at The Crucible on Wednesday afternoon

    If he wins the World Championship again this year he will become only the fourth player to scoop all three Triple Crown events in the same campaign, after Hendry (twice), Davis and Mark Williams.

    Ahead of his opener against Jackson Page on Wednesday, O'Sullivan said: "I don't regard myself as the greatest of all time. Statistically I suppose I am, but I'm just happy to be playing.

    "I suppose as a kid I would have been desperate to be up with those guys but when you get there it's a bit of an anti-climax - it's not as great as you thought it would be.

    Ronnie O'Sullivan in action during the Tour Championship final against Mark Williams in Manchester (Getty Images)
    Image: O'Sullivan has won five events this season, including The Masters and UK Championship for an eighth time each

    'I've gone off track and had to come back'

    "I've had a different career to them. They just did it over a 10-year period while I've sort of gone off track for five or six years, then got myself back together, then disappeared for another three years, then got myself back together again.

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    "I was a bit all over the shop really, stuff going on off the table that can affect how you perform.

    "Hendry and Davis had everything fitted around them to focus on snooker, but that's how it worked out for me, so I've had to go on longer.

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    O'Sullivan says if the World Snooker Championship was relocated to Saudi Arabia then he would find the tournament more convenient as a player

    "I love playing, I enjoy it. I get to travel where I want, take time off when I want, be my own boss.

    "It's those little things, and you want to win because competitiveness has always been in me.

    "I'm pretty cool with what I've done and I'd like to keep winning more.

    "Whether that makes me the greatest or not, I don't know. It really doesn't matter."

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