World Championship

Ronnie O'Sullivan: Snooker players are being treated like lab rats

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Ronnie O'Sullivan lässt seine Teilnahme bei der WM-Endrunde offen

Image credit: Getty Images

ByEnis Koylu
30/07/2020 at 07:20 | Updated 30/07/2020 at 10:30

Ronnie O'Sullivan has repeated his fears about having fans at the World Snooker Championship, saying he feels like players have been treated like lab rats.

The five-time Crucible champion has been a vocal critic of UK government plans to have fans attend the World Snooker Championship, saying that indoor events should be among the last to welcome back supporters.

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Anthony Hamilton, who has severe asthma, has hit out the decision, saying that it could the result in the deaths of innocent people, and he has found an ally in O'Sullivan.

"I defy anybody if they have been keeping their distance from people for four months to say, oh right, now you've got to go into a room full of people - unless you have got a death wish, and some people have in many ways and they just don't care," he is quoted as saying by the BBC.

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"But if you are one of these people that happens to care about your health and are taking it seriously, I totally get how he feels.

"I would feel a bit strange walking in a room with 10 people I don't know, and I have done. I didn't feel comfortable.

"So I totally respect where Anthony is coming from, and where other people are coming from - they want crowds in there, they want things back to normal. We have a choice we don't have to go and play. We all run a bit of a risk.

"I don't think it's a risk worth taking. I have the option not to play but I've decided to play. Maybe with 5,000 fans I could see it's a bit of an income you're going to lose, but 200 fans, is it really?

"Maybe they have to start doing a test on crowds at some point and I've heard people say they're treating the snooker event a little bit like lab rats - you've got to start somewhere, start with snooker players.

"Less insurance to pay out for Anthony Hamilton than there is for Lewis Hamilton."

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