O'Sullivan: World Championship is 'boring'
Snooker legend Ronnie O'Sullivan labelled the World Championship "boring" as he launched an action-packed version of the game aimed at revolutionising the sport.
Created by Rod Gunner and fully endorsed by World Snooker chief Barry Hearn, 'Power Snooker' is seen as a chance to make the sport more exciting to a younger audience.
Three-times world champion O'Sullivan is excited by the developments which will see world's top players go head-to-head at London's Indigo O2 in October.
Power Snooker is a radical departure from the orthodox game, with matches lasting just half-an-hour and where points count instead of frames won.
O'Sullivan could not contain his excitement as he helped to launch the product at London's Courthouse Hotel earlier today.
"I've got to be honest, I find the World Championship really boring," said O'Sullivan.
"I've won it three times but 17 days in Sheffield is draining. People just want to pitch up and play.
"Anything new is a challenge. I definitely think this is the future of snooker. It is just that a few people have got to get their heads around it. It is the year 2010 and we are not stuck in the 1970s anymore.
"Snooker needs a new audience and the idea of a game coming to an end in 30 minutes is exciting.
"I can understand that people still like their long endurance games, but for me the excitement of playing a game that keeps you on your toes, keeps you on your edge, is something I am really looking forward to.
"It is going to change snooker. The crowd will love it and the public will enjoy it. I cannot find a flaw in it. You just want some excitement in your life and this brings excitement."
Cricket has already benefited from the introduction of the Twenty20 version of the game and Hearn, who has already turned darts into a major TV sport, is now looking to do the same for snooker.
He was quick to seize on Gunner's radical idea and ITV Sport and TalkSPORT radio have already backed it.
Rileys clubs will help to promote the game at grass roots level by making 'Power Snooker' available to youngsters in their 120 clubs throughout the UK.
The premiere event in October will be a televised eight-hour tournament and the final line-up has yet to be decided.
But O'Sullivan has already confirmed his participation and invitations have gone out to Neil Robertson, Chinese prodigy Ding Junhui, Mark Selby, Ali Carter, Shaun Murphy, Belgian wonder-kid Luca Brecel and crowd favourite Jimmy White.
Hearn declared: "We are 100pc behind Power Snooker. In this new time for World Snooker, it is important for us to embrace new formats and new ideas. World Snooker welcome the Power Snooker event which we hope will bring new audiences and new fans to the sport."
Originator Gunner added: "It had struck me for some time that the game of snooker needed a new and exciting transfusion. Having seen how Twenty20 cricket has revitalised that sport, I am delighted to have come up with the concept of Power Snooker and seen the positive reaction from within the game."
The first event of its kind is scheduled for October 30 and all the players will wear microphones in order to gain more interaction between crowd and players.
The plan is to deliver an innovative look and feel both live and on-screen. Vibrant lighting and strategic music stings will also be used to produce energy, excitement, tension and theatre.