Ronnie O’Sullivan has insisted he is totally in control of his emotions and happy with where he is mentally.
The six-time world champion assumed favouritism of the Welsh Open when Judd Trump crashed out to Hossein Vafaei, but O’Sullivan was arguably playing the best snooker of the event prior to the world number one’s shock exit.
O’Sullivan dropped his first frame of the event when beating Zhou Yuelong 4-1 to reach the quarter finals.
Selby set to defend European Masters in Germany
- Welsh Open: Draw, Schedule, Results
- Does Federer need to play? Probably not - O'Sullivan on secrets of enduring success
His next opponent will be Ali Carter, a player he has had confrontations with earlier in his career.
O’Sullivan is expecting a tough match whoever he plays, but will not let his emotions get the better of him.
“I am always good mentally,” O’Sullivan told Eurosport. “I might not look it sometimes, but I can dig deep.
You are not going to have a 30-year career like mine and win as much as I have if you're not mentally strong.
“Sometimes I just show it. Some others hold it in better, but they are definitely going through it.
“I am a lot better at managing my emotions now. I know what’s going on now, whereas before I was just a bit confused and used to lose the plot.
“Now I am completely in control of it. I can see it coming and put the brakes on.”
‘Brilliant stuff!’ – O’Sullivan seals Gould whitewash with ton
O’Sullivan has a lust for running that he rates more important than snooker, but he will not be pounding the ground ahead of his quarter-final clash due to a minor injury.
“I need to have a few days off as I have a bit of a sore foot,” the 45-year-old said. “That’s not good for the snooker.
“Sometimes I run myself into the ground and am too tired to play snooker.”
'Blow away the cobwebs' – Wilson begins title defence in style
'So upset' – Saengkham fights back from Covid-19 misery to stun Higgins