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Ronnie O’Sullivan calls for change in scheduling following rapid return to action

Ronnie O'Sullivan has hit out at Barry Hearn (credit: Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)

Ronnie O’Sullivan believes players competing in major finals should be given at least 96 hours’ rest before being expected to compete in another tournament.

O'Sullivan claimed a third Champion of Champions title courtesy of a dramatic deciding frame win over Kyren Wilson in Coventry on Sunday night before making a swift return to action at the Northern Ireland Open on Tuesday afternoon.

The world number three whitewashed Iran's Soheil Vahedi 4-0 in less than an hour and produced three consecutive centuries, despite flying to Belfast on the morning of the match.

Wilson, meanwhile, contested his First Round tie on Monday night just 24 hours after his agonising final defeat and slumped to a 4-3 defeat at the hands of Lee Walker.

O'Sullivan feels players should be given more time to prepare for the next tournament in order to be able to perform to their optimum.

"From when you play a final, especially in such a big occasion, to expect to come and play the next day in not a busy auditorium against a lower-ranked player, it's very hard to get up for it," O'Sullivan told Eurosport.

"As a professional, you take pride in your performance and you want to win every tournament you come to.

"Off the back of that, you're probably at a massive disadvantage and you just come here for the fans more than anything.

"You just want to put on a good performance for the fans and it's kind of impossible when you're put in that situation, I don't care who you are."

Wilson, whose match against Walker ended around midnight, posted the following statement on Twitter:



O'Sullivan, meanwhile, vowed to average less than ten seconds per shot in his opener in Belfast but fell short, averaging 14 seconds.

The five-time World Champion, who has been embroiled in debate with World Snooker Chairman Barry Hearn on Twitter in recent days, says he plans to beat Usain Bolt's sprinting record in snooker terms.

He added: "I was a bit slow and I thought as I was walking round that I'm really slowing my average down here.

"I try to stay true to the fans so I'm really apologetic for that and I'll try and get it down as much as I can in the next game.

"Anything is possible, if your positional play is good enough, then in theory, you shouldn't be having to walk around too much.

"I think you have to keep motivated within a sport when your're playing a lot and you're here, there and everywhere, sometimes you have to set yourself little challenges and make it fun.

"For me, rather than taking it seriously and playing real hard match snooker or feel like I'm playing in practice, I take the exhibition route which is still wanting to perform and entertain but you still have to have that element of sharpness in your concentration."


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Ronnie O’Sullivan calls for change in scheduling following rapid return to action

Ronnie O’Sullivan believes players competing in major finals should be given at least 96 hours’ rest before being expected to compete in another tournament.

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