Saturday 24 March 2018

Snooker: Hendry retires after Crucible exit

SEVEN-TIME world champion Stephen Hendry announced his retirement after losing in the quarter-finals of the World Championship.

The 43-year-old bowed out of the sport after a 13-2 hammering by fellow Scot Stephen Maguire.

Hendry said: "I am officially retired now from tournament snooker. I made the decision about three months ago.

"It was quite an easy decision. There's a few reasons. The schedule didn't help. The fact that I'm not playing the snooker I want to play didn't help. The fact I'm not enjoying practice doesn't help.

"I want to do other things. I've got a lot of commitments now in China."

After some dreadful misses in the morning session, Hendry went into last night's renewal 7-1 adrift. He won the 13th frame to trail 11-2, but, as bad as he was, Maguire was superb as he cruised into the semi-finals.

Elsewhere, Ronnie O'Sullivan has backed Judd Trump to brush off the "jealousy" he believes exists among his fellow players. Trump exited the Crucible after losing 13-12 to Ali Carter, and the 22-year-old claimed his defeat will have been welcomed by many rivals.

"A lot of players enjoy me losing," Trump said. "I don't know (why), I'm not a bad person, I don't have any beef with anyone."

"There probably is a little jealousy, maybe, among the other players," said O'Sullivan. "But I've had to put up with that for 20 years, so you just have to grow big shoulders.

"That's human nature: people in this country don't like people who are successful. If he was in America he would be celebrated, but in this country we sometimes like to see winners fall. But winners enjoy that challenge and find a way of proving critics wrong. I think Judd will be inspired by that."

O'Sullivan was not at his best in yesterday's quarter-final and trails Neil Robertson 5-3. The pair resume this afternoon.

World Championship,

Live, Eurosport/BBC 2, 10.30/1.30

Irish Independent

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