Ronnie O’Sullivan has spoken of a desire to be put under pressure, as he claims it is something that elevates his level.
O’Sullivan has won the World Championship on six occasions, meaning he has produced his best on the greatest stage.
After being knocked out of the Northern Ireland Open by Yan Bingtao, O’Sullivan questioned the merit of such events being played in a shortened format.
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He referenced the World Championship, UK Championship and the Masters as events worthy of their standing as they pit players against each other in longer matches.
It is those events O’Sullivan will be targeting this term, and he will likely want to be seen as one of the players to beat as that brings expectation - and pressure.
“I enjoy the pressure,” O’Sullivan said. “The more pressure or expectation on you, you have to deliver.
It is like a matter of life or death, if your life depends on something you normally find a way of coming out victorious.
“I just think that type of pressure should be something that elevates your game to another level.”
Comparing generations is difficult in any sport, but snooker has been blessed with great players past and present.
O’Sullivan classes himself as the previous generation alongside the likes of Stephen Hendry, Mark Williams and John Higgins.
He feels his quartet would have too much quality for the current greats of Judd Trump, Neil Robertson, Mark Selby and Ding Junhui - although he concedes there is greater depth in the game at present.
“I would say the top four: me, Higgins, Williams and Hendry would probably beat the top four of this: Robertson, Trump, Selby and Ding," O'Sullivan said. "I would fancy our four to come out on top.
“But depth-wise, now I would say you have a lot more banana skins. in these early rounds you can get a lot of players who can make three or four centuries, so you will get a lot of shocks.”
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Stream the Northern Ireland Open live and on demand on discovery+, the Eurosport app and eurosport.com.
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