Snooker: O'Sullivan, King progress at UK Championships
PUBLISHED: 10:00 06 December 2017
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Ronnie O'Sullivan said he felt sorry for his opponent Michael White as he hammered the Welshman to celebrate his birthday in style.
The five-time champion dominated White at the Betway UK Championship, making a phenomenal early break of 132 to cruise into a 4-1 lead.
A half-century break rounded off the drubbing but O’Sullivan admits he had sympathy for the error-strewn Welshman.
He said: “Michael didn’t play well at all. He missed so many balls and you could see he was struggling and he wasn’t getting any luck at all.
“He’s a good lad and he loves the game. I wasn’t great either but I managed to scramble a bit better than he did.”
O’Sullivan’s century break was his 909th at ranking tournaments and despite claiming he doesn’t care who he faces next, the Rocket revealed he still has a burning desire to win.
He said: “I know each century gets me nearer to the 1,000 which is nice to do but I’m sure someone else will get there too – there’s a lot of tournaments these days.
“I come here, have a bit of fun, and if I win it’s a bit of a bonus. This is a hobby. Of course, I want to win but I’m not going to drive myself mad.
“No matter what, I love to win. I have a natural desire to want to compete but I won’t get bothered by the conditions or the referee.”
Mark King also progressed to the last 16 of the tournament thanks to a composed performance over Luca Brecel.
The Romford potter raced into an early lead before the Belgian rallied to make it 3-3.
But King rounded off proceedings with a classy break of 101 to set up a tie with John Higgins in round four.
He said: “I’m obviously delighted. He struggled with an injury which isn’t nice to see. It wasn’t very pretty at times but on the whole, I don’t care how it looks.
“I finished with a ton so that was nice. I felt pretty comfortable and I just want to keep winning the matches.”
*Watch LIVE coverage of the UK Championship on Eurosport and Eurosport Player with Colin Murray and analysis from Jimmy White and Neal Foulds.