Ronnie O’Sullivan claims he was asked to ‘consider his future’ by snooker’s governing body, as seven-time world champion insists he ‘can’t fit in with the organisation’

  • Ronnie O’Sullivan has claimed that World Snooker sent him a ‘not nice’ letter 
  • The seven-time world champion was asked to consider his future in the sport 
  • READ: Ronnie O’Sullivan reveals dad’s parting message before going to prison 

Ronnie O’Sullivan has claimed that, in a recent letter, snooker’s governing body asked him ‘to consider’ his future in the sport.

The seven-time world champion recently became embroiled in a verbal battle with the World Snooker Tour (WST) after they threatened five players with legal action if they took part in a non-sanctioned event in Macau.

O’Sullivan, himself playing in a Shanghai exhibition that month, backed the ‘Macau Five’ – describing WST’s stance as ‘b*ll*cks, trying to scare players like that’. 

Now, the 47-year-old has revealed that the WST have sent him a letter which asked him to consider his future in the sport. 

‘The letter they’ve sent me has not been very nice,’ the Englishman said according to BBC Sport. 

Ronnie O’Sullivan claimed that, in a recent letter, snooker’s governing body asked him ‘to consider’ his future in the sport

An exhibition in Macau, described as China’s Las Vegas, has caused a rift between its stars and the tour – with O’Sullivan taking the side of his fellow snooker stars

‘I think I’ve done a lot of good for this game. I’d expect someone to come out and say, ‘you know what, we think you’ve done great for the game, we love what you give’.

‘I never get a ‘well done’ letter. All I get is a letter saying I’ve done this and that wrong. I’ve not spoken to anyone at World Snooker for 10 years and I won’t ever reach out to them again because I know the culture is not for me.’

‘I just want to run my own ship. They want to focus on 130 players, which is great, good luck to all the players. But not all the players have the opportunities that I’ve got.

‘I just can’t fit in with an organisation who just want you to be the same as everyone else, it’s just not going to work for me. I wish I could just focus on the tournaments. Golfers have good sponsors and big prize money for all the events’.

Four-time world champions Mark Selby and John Higgins, this year’s Crucible winner Luca Brecel, Ali Carter and Thailand’s Thepchaiya Un-Nooh have all snubbed the WST’s Northern Ireland Open to take part in the money-spinning exhibition in China.

O’Sullivan backed the players’ mutiny and criticised the WST for scaring players 

However, the WST warned the stars that they would be breaching their contracts if they went ahead and played in Macau and could be fined or banned.

O’Sullivan, on the other hands, wants the ability to cash in with big-money exhibitions, which players’ contracts can restrict. 

In his latest comments, O’Sullivan suggested moving the whole tour to China where he claimed organisers were out of their way to make players feel special.

In a separate interview with Eurosport, O’Sullivan said he will look to play big events in the UK but would then prioritise events and exhibitions in front of good crowds in Asia.

The World Snooker Tour has responded to O’Sullivan’s criticism, insisting the significant steps are being made to ensure snooker is a global sport. 

O’Sullivan recently appeared in a lucrative Shanghai exhibition last month

‘Our UK events have grown massively over the past decade. At the Masters in London for example, ten years ago we were selling less than 500 tickets for certain sessions, while now most sessions are selling out the 2,000-seat arena,’ the statement read.

‘We are a global tour and in the UK it’s important that we bring events to many different regions so that fans across the home nations have the chance to see live snooker. Our choice of venues is based on many factors including size and backstage facilities for the players.

‘The facts speaks for themselves as our overall ticket sales have increased by 300% over the past ten years, or if we discount the World Championship then that figure is 700%. We are setting new records for sales at every venue year after year. Today the arena in Brentwood was sold out well in advance.

‘We have focused on the fan experience to make it a great day out for people of all ages. And for the players, overall prize money has increased and is set to hit record levels this season. We always listen to feedback from the players but we feel we are making significant steps forward as a global sport.’

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