What to get Ronnie O’Sullivan for his 46th birthday?
The six-time world champion was celebrating his special day while working as an analyst for Eurosport at the UK Championship final in York.
To mark the occasion he was presented with a pair of running shoes, each with a candle inside.
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O’Sullivan, a keen runner, looked slightly embarrassed as fellow analyst Jimmy White and presenter Radzi Chinyanganya burst into a rendition of ‘Happy Birthday’, and were joined by fans who were watching on.
However, O’Sullivan gamely blew out the candles and thanked the crew for the present.
O’Sullivan is set to leave the Eurosport set this afternoon to travel to Llandudno to compete at the Scottish Open.
He was watching the first session of the UK Championship final between Luca Brecel and Zhao Xintong, and was impressed with what he saw from both players.
“I knew Luca would handle it well because he has been there before and won tournaments. We know Zhao has probably got more ability than anybody on the circuit and looks like a complete player. The only way he is not going to win tournaments is if he can’t stand up to the big occasion but today it looks like he is handling it pretty well.
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“If he shows he has a winning mentality and can get over the line and not look under pressure doing it then he will be a massive handful for anyone in the game.
He’s very efficient and there’s so much improvement. He is very gifted.
“They will keep delivering because they are young, fearless and hungry. There’s been talk about a changing of the guard and this is really it. The players in their 30’s and 40’s won’t be able to go with this for much longer and there are more players like Brecel and Zhao. They will give everyone belief – it’s great stuff.”
Zhao leads 5-3 after the opening session, having benefited from a couple of very fortunate breaks.
“He looks totally at ease,” said White about Zhao.
He is 5-3 up in his first Triple Crown final so he is doing a good job.
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