Jimmy White believes Ronnie O’Sullivan will be ‘gutted’ to have lost to Neil Robertson, after putting in “a lot of work” on his Masters preparation.
After winning the World Grand Prix in December to snap a 16-month run without a trophy, O’Sullivan arrived at the Alexandra Palace in upbeat mood.
After spending the best part of two years downplaying his desire to win, he spoke positively about making a push for the title.
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He made an impressive start in beating Jack Lisowski 6-1, but could not find the same form as Robertson ran out a 6-4 winner.
O’Sullivan said in his post-match interview that he was not disappointed to lose, but White feels that is a smokescreen.
“The way he played in parts of that match against Jack Lisowski, it looked like he could win that tournament quite easily,” White said in the Eurosport studio. “He did not start off well.
“Neil Robertson lost position a few times, but potted some great balls and was determined to keep his breaks going.
“Sometimes you are sitting in your seat thinking you might have a chance, but the balls Neil Robertson potted got him over the line.
O’Sullivan will be gutted, make no mistake about that. He has put a lot of work in for this tournament and it did not work for him.
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