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“I didn’t apologise” to Ali Carter or Mark Allen says Ronnie O’Sullivan

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Ronnie O'Sullivan keeps his title defence on track (credit:Nigel French/PA Images)

O’Sullivan has denied apologising (Photo by Nigel French/PA Images)

Ronnie O’Sullivan admits he has not apologised to either Ali Carter or Mark Allen over the incidents in their last respective meetings despite the pair suggesting otherwise.

O’Sullivan and Carter became embroiled in the now infamous ‘barge gate’ incident during the 2018 World Championship at The Crucible and will meet for the first time since in Saturday’s Northern Ireland Open Semi-Final.

O’Sullivan was also involved in a heated exchange with Mark Allen during the recent Champion of Champions in which he accused the Antrim cueist of moving in his eye line.

Allen has since revealed he has cleared the air with O’Sullivan, while Carter revealed in an interview after his Quarter-Final win on Friday that O’Sullivan had apologised over their incident in 2018.

The Rocket, however, denies that he has apologised, instead stating that he simply wants to “move on” and “just be friends”.

“I didn’t apologise to Ali and I didn’t apologise to Mark Allen either,” O’Sullivan told WST.

“I just said ‘let’s just move on and not hold any grudges over it’, it is what it is.

“I still feel like I was in the right on both occasions, so that ‘apology’ that they say that I said was definitely not an apology, more like “let’s just move on”.

“It doesn’t really matter because I’ll see them around tournaments, they’ll see me and we might as well say hello to each other.

“It was like, ‘let’s break the ice’, we’re not boxers, we’re not enemies, it’s just a game of sticks and balls.

“I’m happy with my life, you’re happy with your life, so let’s just be ‘friends’.”

O’Sullivan is appearing in his first ranking Semi-Final since claiming a sixth world title back in August and is out to make it 15 wins in 16 competitive meetings with Carter.

O’Sullivan has lost out to Judd Trump in each of the last two Northern Ireland Open finals and could be set for a third rematch if the pair can both progress on Saturday.

WATCH O’SULLIVAN vs CARTER STREAMED LIVE HERE (18+)