Perhaps the biggest question about Ronnie O’Sullivan is what’s going on with his elbow.
Before the match, he said via the digital broadcast of Eurosport that everything is fine, and he does not suffer from any pain, as he has been taking painkillers for two days. It soon became clear that this fine facility deserved gold: he opened the match with a break of one hundred.
His game has risen by leaps and bounds compared to what he showed in the first round. Page answered with a hundred, but Racketa also pushed one, meaning the first three frames all brought one hundred breaks. In the fourth frame, the quality dropped a little, as there was not only a hundred, but not even a half-hundred break. However, in the end, O’Sullivan worked another magic, reaching the last 32 with a 4-1 lead, and breaking three hundred points.
He played fast, like he always does when he’s really good. But not hurriedly, not listlessly, not rushing the game, but simply quickly, and at the same time giving each thrust due attention. The only drawback to this match is that it ended very quickly, lasting only 49 minutes. But these four-win fights are just that. Especially if O’Sullivan plays well.
The seven-time world champion said after his win that he trained for four hours on Tuesday, something that is arguably very rare for him. He tried to reform his playing style, and as we saw, he succeeded completely. It’s been a long time since we’ve seen him play this well in a full match. This is a big deal even if it is a very short match.
The second round of the English Open has ended. Among the senior players, Mark Selby, Neil Robertson, Shaun Murphy, Barry Hawkins and Kyren Wilson have already said goodbye. However, there are still plenty of strong players left in the field, including the entire Class of ’92, i.e. Ronnie O’Sullivan, John Higgins and Mark Williams (two of whom have won the last two tournaments…), as well as Judd Trump, Luca Brecel, Mark Allen, And Ding Junhui.