RONNIE O’SULLIVAN has suffered an injury scare ahead of his Crucible World Championship title defense.
It was announced on Sunday morning that the Rocket had withdrawn from the inaugural WST Classic in Leicester due to medical reasons.
The world No. 1 was due to meet England’s David Grace in the second round at 6pm on Sunday night until he retired with an elbow injury.
O’Sullivan, 47, will now fail to qualify for the eight-man Tour Championship in Hull, which begins next Monday.
And that means if he recovers from this physical setback his next appearance will be on Saturday 15th April, the opening day of the World Snooker Championships.
O’Sullivan beat Judd Trump in the 2022 World Finals to win a seventh crown, leveling him with Stephen Hendry’s 1999 mark.
The Essex Potter tweeted: “Really disappointed but had to drop out due to an elbow injury and hope to be back as soon as possible.”
O’Sullivan was without his snooker cue on Saturday night as he watched the UFC at London’s O2 Arena alongside Hollywood stars Tom Holland and Jason Statham.
Meanwhile, Neil Robertson will miss a chance to chase a third straight Tour title after losing 4-3 to Oliver Lines in the last 64.
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The Australian – who won the event in 2021 and 2022 – needed to win the inaugural WST Classic trophy to remain in the hunt for qualification.
But he will now have many weeks at home to focus solely on the Crucible after that shock defeat.
https://www.the-sun.com/sport/7670608/ronnie-osullivan-injury-scare-crucible/ Snooker legend Ronnie O’Sullivan suffers injury scares ahead of Crucible world title defense and withdraws from WST Classic