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Thursday 23 February 2017

Rocket blasts 'anarchy' at the UK snooker

Ronnie O'SULLIVAN claims the current format of 128-player tournaments is "anarchy" and preventing investment from China.

World Snooker chairman Barry Hearn rebuked the five-time world champion for recent comments in comparing the sport to a car boot sale and also suggesting it had lost respect in the public eye.

O'Sullivan saw off Matthew Stevens 6-2 to reach the quarter-finals of the Betway UK Championship in York yesterday.

Afterwards the 40-year-old used his post-match interview in the BBC Sport studio to offer further insight into ways he felt snooker could move forward and embrace lucrative overseas sponsorship deals.

"China is where it is at. The money is there, they are ready to pump it in to snooker, they just don't want 128 players," O'Sullivan said.

"It is anarchy when you go over there (to compete in a 128-player tournament), you watch it and it is just too many players, too many people. They want the cream of the cream, and that is the top 32."

Elsewhere last night, Mark Selby, Marco Fu and Shaun Murphy also marched into the quarter-finals with comfortable victories.

GOLF

STEPHANIE MEADOW enjoyed a steady opening round to the final stage of the LPGA Tour Schools with a one-over-par 73.

The former Curtis Cup star began with a bogey on the Hills Course, getting it back at the par five second. She parred the next six holes before a double-bogey saw her turn two-over par at the ninth.

She got one of those shots back with a birdie at the par four 11th and finished with seven straight pars to lie tied 52nd out of the 156 starters. Amateur Katelyn Dambaugh and Thailand's Pannarat Thanapolboonyaras share the lead on five-under 67.

gaelic games

Ethan Rafferty's extra-time goal powered Ulster University Jordanstown to a 1-15 to 0-13 victory over DCU in the Independent.ie Ryan Cup final last night.

Martin McHugh's side pushed for home in the first period of added time when Paddy McBrearty angled over his seventh point of the night, and Rafferty's strike opened up a four-point gap.

DCU didn't register their first score until the 17th minute, when Sligo's Niall Murphy knocked over a 40-metre free and they managed to fight themselves back into contention until McBrearty's point forced extra-time.

Scorers - UUJ: P McBrearty 0-7 (5f), E Rafferty 1-2, N Madine 0-2 (1 '45), E Donnelly, R McGlone, F Burns, N McKeever 0-1 each.

DCU: C Mulligan, D Smith (1f), N Murphy (3f) 0-3 each, T Lahiffe, C McGonagle (f), C Breheny, M Plunkett 0-1 each.

Irish Independent

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