Ronnie O'Sullivan has been named on the shortlist for the BBC Sports Personality of the Year Award for the first time.
It comes after a fine 2020 in which he won the World Championship and also reached the final of the Northern Ireland Open.
His world title - coming in his record 28th consecutive Crucible appearance - was his sixth, taking him to 37 ranking titles over the course of his career, and 20 in the Triple Crown series.
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O'Sullivan was 44 years and 254 days old when he beat Kyren Wilson 18-8 in that final, making him the oldest player to win the tournament since his former mentor Ray Reardon 42 years ago.
Although Eurosport expert O'Sullivan has been previously overlooked for the Sports Personality of the Year shortlist, snooker as a whole has enjoyed some recognition - the 12th most honoured sport at the ceremony.
Steve Davis finished in the top three five times and won once, in 1988 (he achieved second place in 1981 and 1987 and third place in 1984 and 1989). Alex "Hurricane" Higgins finished second in 1982, and Stephen Hendry finished second in 1990.
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“I think it’s more a reflection on snooker rather than me. Snooker is where it is in comparison to other sports," O'Sullivan told Eurosport before the announcement was made.
“I think a lot of snooker players get overlooked because of the sport, not because of their achievements."
And he was quick to point out that he thought someone else was more deserving of a nomination.
"If it was on their achievements, you’d probably have to say Judd Trump was deserving of getting in the top three because he’s broken records: winning six ranking tournaments last season was a great achievement,” he added.
The public will vote for the winner during the BBC One show on Sunday December 20.
Eurosport pundit Neal Foulds says the nomination is well deserved for O'Sullivan.
"Ronnie’s career has spanned a long time. There was a period when he was seen as a bit of an under-achiever. When it got past 2000 you thought he’s won a few things but he’s this wonderful talent who hasn’t won that much – now he’s won it all and he’s won it again and again.
"He’s the current world champion and all those years must amount to something. It’s never boring when he is playing, there is always something going on, and he deserves to be on that list."
Jimmy White added: "It’s about time he got recognised for his amazing achievements in snooker. I hope everybody votes for him."
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