Day 5 Masters Snooker Extra


Day 5

Quarter-final highlights are introduced by Hazel Irvine from Alexandra Palace.


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Hello again. Thursday marked the start of quarterfinals in this

:00:32.:00:40.

year's Dafabet Masters 2017. And we have a people's champion, once again

:00:41.:00:44.

one of the star attractions. Ronnie O'Sullivan. This is the six-time

:00:45.:00:48.

champion who many consider slightly fortunate to have made it into the

:00:49.:00:56.

quarters this year after the last gasp effort against Liang Wenbo. He

:00:57.:01:00.

will certainly hope that the flu remedies have kicked in because

:01:01.:01:06.

he'll need a clear head if he's to see off Australia's Neil Robertson,

:01:07.:01:11.

the winner in 2012. We'll share this in the company of John Parrot and

:01:12.:01:14.

birthday boy, Dennis Taylor. Very difficult to predict the winner

:01:15.:01:26.

of this one, John? Yes, talking at the top of the show about the

:01:27.:01:30.

records coming into this. I think probably the main match I'd

:01:31.:01:33.

concentrate on is the Welsh Open because Robertson was 5-2 ahead in

:01:34.:01:38.

that before Ronnie put the after burners on to win seven frames in a

:01:39.:01:44.

trot which I don't think that anybody in the game would win seven

:01:45.:01:49.

frames on the trot. But then seven frames in the semifinals and Ronnie

:01:50.:01:54.

beat him 6-0 and made five breaks over 60 in that match. So whether

:01:55.:01:57.

Neil will be remembering that or this is just a case of another day,

:01:58.:02:02.

we'll soon find out. Well, he came up short there. That

:02:03.:02:05.

was interesting because the table has been absolutely flying a very

:02:06.:02:10.

quick cloth, but this is a new cloth on and even if it is off the same

:02:11.:02:14.

roll of cloth, it will be interesting to see if this table

:02:15.:02:18.

plays as quick. It's the same table but if the cloth plays as fast as

:02:19.:02:25.

the previous one, we'll find out in a couple of shots' time. Good safety

:02:26.:02:44.

there from Neil. Might be able to get past the yellow and blue from

:02:45.:02:47.

that red, but looking at that angle, there's no value in taking that on

:02:48.:02:51.

because he'll be careering into the reds. If it was straight, he could

:02:52.:02:56.

have a go at it and get on to the black. Apparently, I just found out

:02:57.:03:04.

that just the cushion clothes have been changed. So the bed of the

:03:05.:03:12.

table will play it the way it has been. Strange why they would change

:03:13.:03:21.

the cushion cloth? They weren't really bouncing that much, John? No,

:03:22.:03:25.

I suppose if anything is going to wear out quickly, it would be there

:03:26.:03:29.

on the jaws of the pockets. That's probably why that has been done. But

:03:30.:03:32.

anyway, the best safety from Ronnie there, caught the bump on the middle

:03:33.:03:39.

pocket. Excellent cueing. From Neil Robertson. Looking straight forward

:03:40.:03:42.

that. I didn't see much of Neil's match

:03:43.:04:20.

with Allister Carter, I was on in the afternoon, but apparently he

:04:21.:04:26.

played very well. Yeah, I was chatting with Neil the other day

:04:27.:04:30.

before he came out and played and he was saying that scoring wise, he

:04:31.:04:34.

felt like he was right back to his best. He made 13 century breaks and

:04:35.:04:38.

in the little mini league thing that he was playing in. You don't do that

:04:39.:04:41.

unless you're litting the ball properly. But one of the things that

:04:42.:04:45.

you really do need to do if you're playing Ronnie O'Sullivan in what

:04:46.:04:49.

can be deemed as back yard, you need to have plenty of character. You

:04:50.:04:53.

need to stand up to it. Grit comes into it.

:04:54.:05:02.

Two fabulous players who got... You got the abundance of natural talent

:05:03.:05:07.

in O'Sullivan. The best player I've ever seen with a cue in the hand and

:05:08.:05:14.

then the Australian with a laser-like cue action, tremendous

:05:15.:05:17.

break and an all around match player with that Aussie grit. Great matchen

:05:18.:05:21.

up. I mean, what this player achieved in

:05:22.:05:34.

the 2013 and 2014 season has never been done again to make 100

:05:35.:05:38.

centuries. If you leave the one there. In fact,

:05:39.:05:56.

there's a couple of them that are available. He'lls coming up a little

:05:57.:05:58.

bit short, though. Might just be OK. He needs to pull up a little bit.

:05:59.:06:23.

That's OK. Well, he could play a little cannon into the five reds

:06:24.:06:30.

there. Because there's a big one on the blue. And this could really open

:06:31.:06:45.

things up. Went delicately into the reds.

:06:46.:06:56.

Nicely played that cannon but it could come out a little better. He's

:06:57.:07:01.

got to play this and avoid the cannon on the red just near the side

:07:02.:07:08.

cushion when you pot this one. Which he's managed to do. And already it

:07:09.:07:14.

is there with the break. You can see Neil Robertson knows the importance

:07:15.:07:17.

of a good start in this match. He looks tuned up and ready to go right

:07:18.:07:25.

from the off. Started the season off pretty well early on and had a

:07:26.:07:29.

semifinal. And a couple of disappointing results by his open

:07:30.:07:33.

standards since then. But as I say, you start to make all of the

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centuries in the last couple of weeks and the hard graft he's put in

:07:38.:07:42.

over Christmas time. If he gets back to his best, he'll take some

:07:43.:07:47.

stopping, he's that good. I was surprised that he dropped down

:07:48.:08:02.

to number seven in the world. He certainly, as Stephen Hendry said,

:08:03.:08:07.

he should be in the top three, you would think. But that is how tough

:08:08.:08:13.

the game is these days and you can quite easily slip down the rankings

:08:14.:08:18.

a little bit if you have a bit of a lean spell. Yeah, he's just taking a

:08:19.:08:22.

bit of time with this one because as you can see there, just over a

:08:23.:08:26.

minute. But he's just got to try to get the next positional shot because

:08:27.:08:31.

the red he was looking at, if he can he can get straight on it, he

:08:32.:08:36.

doesn't want to be playing any cannons. This is not straight

:08:37.:08:46.

forward. I was surprised that he came up off the shot there.

:08:47.:09:02.

Well, he didn't want to risk the delicate hold on the black there.

:09:03.:09:10.

Just forced in and hoping to drop nicely on pink or blue, but it's not

:09:11.:09:17.

absolutely perfect. You've got to avoid the baulk colours and get back

:09:18.:09:24.

up into the scoring end of the table.

:09:25.:09:30.

In and out of the baulk area. I think those two reds near the black

:09:31.:09:39.

definitely pot. He couldn't have hit that much better. That was a lovely

:09:40.:09:45.

shot. Really well controlled. Looking in good nick.

:09:46.:09:53.

Yeah, he got around on those two reds with the aid of a little flick

:09:54.:09:57.

on the brown here. But you can expect this from these

:09:58.:10:07.

two players. I think if the other makes a mistake the way that they're

:10:08.:10:12.

playing, every chance that they'll finish the frame off. Yes, but how

:10:13.:10:17.

important is it to stick your marker down in a match. You, many of times

:10:18.:10:21.

in commentary said about Steve Davis, used to be brilliant within

:10:22.:10:24.

the opening frame. It's very important just to let your opponent

:10:25.:10:27.

know that you're here to play and you're at your best and this is what

:10:28.:10:32.

Neil Robertson is doing. This is hugely impressive.

:10:33.:10:48.

Would be difficult to go with a century break but he's almost over

:10:49.:10:55.

the winning line in the opening frame.

:10:56.:11:05.

Will have to wait for the next frame now because Ronnie does need a

:11:06.:11:12.

snooker regardless of what happens. He's got a chance to move either of

:11:13.:11:21.

the sets of two reds there. Will have to play a double if he's going

:11:22.:11:25.

to have a chance of a century. A double but the frame is well and

:11:26.:11:30.

truly in the bag. Just checking that, looking at the score board. So

:11:31.:11:35.

he might as well have a go at the double.

:11:36.:11:49.

A lovely start from the Australian. He got one chance on that and that's

:11:50.:11:56.

all he needed and that lovely break has given him the opening frame.

:11:57.:12:00.

It's 1-0 to Neil Robertson. Well, that's a pity. The break off

:12:01.:12:17.

shot has put a red right next to the black and put it out of commission.

:12:18.:12:24.

Now the player would have liked to have seen that. It just means that

:12:25.:12:33.

Ronnie can't take the red on to the left corner because there's no

:12:34.:12:34.

colour available. Can you believe it, it's 25 years

:12:35.:13:12.

since Haas came on the scene as a referee. Yeah, one of the very best

:13:13.:13:20.

and a lovely man. We've all got older together.

:13:21.:13:35.

As it is, Ronnie may as well stay where he is because he's going into

:13:36.:13:40.

a similar position. This time Ronnie can play down again

:13:41.:13:56.

at the end of the table. You can see the edge of the pack there.

:13:57.:14:28.

Ronnie's God friend, Damian Hirst, renowned artist. He didn't think

:14:29.:14:35.

that he would be back because he thought that Liang Wenbo would be

:14:36.:14:40.

back and knock Ronnie out. And a very easy black to knock the six

:14:41.:14:49.

times former champion out. It can leave a free ball here. He's left a

:14:50.:14:57.

long pot on. I wonder how Neil will take this. Will he go around the

:14:58.:15:04.

back here. We'll just show you here. He can play around on the ball or he

:15:05.:15:09.

could play it to nuch the red away from the black.

:15:10.:15:16.

It's the first time in a while that he's going across the ball there.

:15:17.:15:22.

Usually a feature of the cue action that it goes straight through. But

:15:23.:15:25.

definitely hit across that one. Yeah, this can develop the pink and

:15:26.:16:01.

reds because the black is tied up as well at the moment. So, how hard

:16:02.:16:10.

will he hit this? Might just be able to get through. It's tight, though.

:16:11.:16:18.

Very tight. In fact, I don't think that he can get through to it. A bit

:16:19.:16:26.

unlucky there with the split. Yeah, it wasn't totally ideal with the

:16:27.:16:30.

blue. He couldn't get loads of power into that. But he'd be very

:16:31.:16:39.

disappointed if he doesn't cover it with the blue if he's planning to

:16:40.:16:41.

leave the red there. Just caught the pink half ball. Full

:16:42.:16:56.

ball contact would have been better but he was still a little bit

:16:57.:16:58.

unlucky there. The difficult thing here for Neil is

:16:59.:17:20.

that he's playing off the side of the pack but the red on the

:17:21.:17:24.

left-hand side of the pack is the one that he's got to keep covered.

:17:25.:17:31.

Cue ballually in the same place that he played from. Should be ideal.

:17:32.:17:39.

Well, he hasn't done that and if Ronnie can pot this red and manage

:17:40.:17:46.

to get the cue ball out, then it's a chance. He could finish on the pink

:17:47.:17:54.

here if he hits the reds. Can't get through to that, the main

:17:55.:18:02.

part of the shot. Normally very reliable with this

:18:03.:18:18.

type of shot but he hasn't had much table time.

:18:19.:18:52.

Obviously the black is out of commission and the pink is going to

:18:53.:18:58.

get tied up on-the-spot, it looks like.

:18:59.:19:05.

Now, is there enough room? That's the ball marker that will tell the

:19:06.:19:13.

referee whether there's spots and as John mentioned, the peng now tied up

:19:14.:19:17.

so he'll have to play up for the blue. He had to look to see if the

:19:18.:19:21.

pink would go into the left corner. But we find out the way that he

:19:22.:19:25.

plays the positional side of the shot and if it pots or not. Well, it

:19:26.:19:33.

does. The pink does pass that red by the looks of things. Well, maybe

:19:34.:19:36.

not. Otherwise he would have played it.

:19:37.:19:47.

He did look at it. So Ronnie would have known whether the pink would

:19:48.:19:51.

go, but once the red has been removed, it could develop it. I

:19:52.:19:56.

don't know where the pink would go now.

:19:57.:20:04.

Just can't quite get the position this he likes at the moment.

:20:05.:20:10.

Slightly off with each shot and the bump doesn't help there because it

:20:11.:20:13.

actually puts him straight on the blue. Might have been top side. So

:20:14.:20:23.

another good medium range pot to screw back and back for the blue

:20:24.:20:27.

again. Oh, this is tough. But going close to the left middle pocket.

:20:28.:20:34.

He'll have to be careful here. And hit it lovely. Hit it beautifully.

:20:35.:20:42.

Really well struck and the best thing there is with the position

:20:43.:20:46.

that you see, there's three below the pink but two of the bottom ones

:20:47.:20:51.

are definitely there. So he's got an area to play in there. Straightaway.

:20:52.:20:54.

That's where he is. Well, there didn't look to be many

:20:55.:21:10.

points available to him when he came to the table. The balls were all

:21:11.:21:14.

tied up and he's making a terrific job of this. Always nice to see the

:21:15.:21:21.

big breaks going in when they're all sitting nicely, but when you see

:21:22.:21:26.

them having to work hard like this, it's very skilful, indeed. Now, if

:21:27.:21:31.

he's straight. Now he's got a slight angle. So he can force this in.

:21:32.:21:38.

Yeah, and I think that both of the reds might pot. The one next to the

:21:39.:21:43.

pink and the one below it may do so. Hasn't he taken these well. I mean,

:21:44.:21:47.

the table when he first came to it wasn't brilliant, but so far, this

:21:48.:21:56.

has been superb. Both players in good nick, Dennis. And that's what

:21:57.:22:02.

everybody wanted. The packed house at the Alexander Palace and everyone

:22:03.:22:07.

watching at home. We just wanted to see both of the players playing well

:22:08.:22:12.

and it looks as if we're going to see that.

:22:13.:22:17.

There's always something a bit special about England playing

:22:18.:22:21.

Australia. At any sport. I'll just make sure of this

:22:22.:22:43.

yesterday. The other players that I can think

:22:44.:22:56.

of who would have come here to win this frame from there, O'Sullivan

:22:57.:22:58.

has. Absolutely brilliant break. Ronnie O'Sullivan has returned the

:22:59.:23:19.

compliment, he got a chance and he returned it enough to win the frame.

:23:20.:23:21.

One each. Goodness me. That's a long way off.

:23:22.:23:50.

I don't think that I've seen him miss by that far before. Hmmm. A

:23:51.:23:58.

little worrying. Well, it's not an easy starter for

:23:59.:24:11.

Ronnie. The pot is not so difficult. The position is more difficult.

:24:12.:24:17.

Well, that was a better shot than it looked to have to screw that. So

:24:18.:24:25.

still needs another good positional shot. See the way that it comes off

:24:26.:24:29.

the position here. Watch it straighten up and keep it away from

:24:30.:24:31.

the reds. He made sure of the pot there. But

:24:32.:24:41.

didn't avoid the yellow. Has he potted the yellow? Almost.

:24:42.:25:10.

Wasn't an easy chance that. But Robertson would be delighted that he

:25:11.:25:13.

got six points off of it. He must have thought when he missed that

:25:14.:25:17.

long pot by a mile he was going to be in big trouble.

:25:18.:25:36.

If he can get up and down on the yellow, he needs to get plenty of

:25:37.:25:43.

side on it to at least get up past the blue spot area. He'd like to get

:25:44.:25:48.

a bit closer to the reds. And he's got to avoid the middle pockets when

:25:49.:25:56.

he plays this. Yeah, big shot this, really, just to get position.

:25:57.:26:03.

Well, he is on one. But can he get any position off the red that he's

:26:04.:26:12.

landed on. Pretty tight to the cushion.

:26:13.:26:17.

No good, that one. To have to play something a bit special to get on to

:26:18.:26:32.

the pink from that red. Very awkward.

:26:33.:26:45.

I'll tell you what, what an effort that is. I mean, that... Is... As

:26:46.:26:54.

good a positional shot as you'll ever see. Loads of top spin there.

:26:55.:26:58.

That was a bit special. Well, you won't see a better shot played today

:26:59.:27:03.

than that one. That was absolutely fabulous.

:27:04.:27:11.

Played that just to try to clear the black spot. But to confirm, the red

:27:12.:27:19.

is still covering it. A really brilliant shot that was. He

:27:20.:27:37.

might need another one here looking at this. Has he got a bit of angle

:27:38.:27:42.

to work with here? Just a slight angle. So in a perfect world, he'd

:27:43.:27:47.

like to get a half ball off the blue and come down and split the pack up

:27:48.:27:53.

with the black. He's just the wrong side there. And you can see, taking

:27:54.:28:00.

the weight towards the baulk area. Well, just look at the cue power of

:28:01.:28:13.

the Australian there. Loads of top spin and left-hand side, but he's

:28:14.:28:20.

going to finish to the cushion. That could be the end of break. And there

:28:21.:28:33.

you can see all covering each other. In fact, the way they finished, it's

:28:34.:28:37.

very awkward to get a good safety shot in. He's just nestling on to

:28:38.:28:47.

the black here. Yeah, the last two frails, the balls

:28:48.:29:11.

have just gone a little awkward, that's why the previous frame lasted

:29:12.:29:15.

just over 29 minutes. The first frame was just over 10 minutes and

:29:16.:29:19.

the second just over 11. But sometimes, the balls dictate what

:29:20.:29:23.

happens and we're back to tipping and tapping again.

:29:24.:29:30.

I'll tell you what, that was nearly a little bit too hard. But his heart

:29:31.:29:41.

was in his mouth for a second there. Yeah, nothing that you can do when

:29:42.:29:46.

it's like this. Neither player can get the cue ball back into the baulk

:29:47.:29:52.

area. So you have to keep playing until an opportunity arises to do

:29:53.:29:53.

so. Scoo he thinks that he can screw

:29:54.:30:16.

down this with some side and get it back into the baulk area. You've got

:30:17.:30:20.

to be careful with these that you don't play a push shot.

:30:21.:30:36.

Yeah, a push shot is where the tip of the cue ball and the object ball

:30:37.:30:42.

are all in contact at the same time. Tough for the referee to decide.

:30:43.:30:50.

What is a push shot. But the player normally would walk away from the

:30:51.:30:54.

table and declare it. You know yourself if you pushed it. But look

:30:55.:30:56.

at this for a safety. Nothing too appetising either side

:30:57.:31:22.

so Ronnie was looking to see if he could drop on the red that's nearest

:31:23.:31:24.

the top cushion. He tried something a bit special

:31:25.:31:44.

there to swing the cue around the angles but it was very, very

:31:45.:31:48.

difficult. He's just looking to see if the black goes into the pocket

:31:49.:31:52.

that he's going to take the red here. Not sure if it is available.

:31:53.:31:56.

It would be a big advantage if the black goes.

:31:57.:32:04.

He's the wrong side of the blue. So maybe the black was just that little

:32:05.:32:10.

bit too tight. And that looks like if you were in

:32:11.:32:26.

behind the black, that you'd be able to pot it. We might have to see a

:32:27.:32:37.

Neil Robertson special here. We talk about cue power. If he takes this

:32:38.:32:42.

red to the right corner, he's going to get a lot of action on this. Just

:32:43.:32:49.

have a look at this. Well, he had an angle so he didn't have to screw it

:32:50.:32:55.

back. He's just scrapping for position there at the moment Neil

:32:56.:32:59.

Robertson. He can't quite get them how he wants them. And slightly

:33:00.:33:08.

wrong all the time. Having to play the cue ball around the table all

:33:09.:33:12.

the time so this is a hard work break at the moment.

:33:13.:33:24.

A little bit coming up after this frame. I mean the first two frames,

:33:25.:33:32.

both players had a chance and made enough to make the frame but the

:33:33.:33:37.

last two, the balls have gone so awkward.

:33:38.:33:58.

Should leave the other red available. A big chance. That's in.

:33:59.:34:08.

And there's no real easing now from this position. Going for a kick or

:34:09.:34:16.

something to win this frame. This is really good for Neil Robertson. It's

:34:17.:34:20.

a good effort because he missed one or two shots in this frame and lost

:34:21.:34:24.

the cue ball a couple of times. One attempt at a long pot was a long way

:34:25.:34:32.

away. If he can get out at the interval 2-2, he'll be delighted.

:34:33.:34:58.

He won't be coming back to the table here. El a he be heading straight

:34:59.:35:06.

off for the mid-session interval. And sometimes the interval can

:35:07.:35:11.

change things around and as I say, the last two frames have been very

:35:12.:35:21.

awkward. And I suppose, 2-2 is a pretty fair reflection? Yeah, I

:35:22.:35:27.

would think so. As you say, just because it is awkward frames doesn't

:35:28.:35:30.

mean it's not important, does it? They're all the same. They all count

:35:31.:35:33.

for one. Doesn't matter about that. Ronnie is

:35:34.:35:48.

on his way out of the arena so a couple of awkward frames. Two very

:35:49.:35:52.

good opening frames and we go to the mid-session interval two frames

:35:53.:35:53.

each. Have a look at that for an opening

:35:54.:36:55.

pot. That was normal service resumed at the Neil Robertson action. Do you

:36:56.:36:59.

think that he could drop next to the black? That would open things up and

:37:00.:37:03.

he might have an angle on the brown to play up on to that. Yeah, it just

:37:04.:37:08.

depends on what angle he has on the brown and which shot he decides to

:37:09.:37:11.

play. It's a natural angle to split the pack but I'm sure that he won't

:37:12.:37:14.

play that. That's pretty good. He got on the

:37:15.:37:25.

red and this opens the black up for the blue this time.

:37:26.:37:38.

Still available, but if he wants to, it will go into the play. The sort

:37:39.:37:44.

of shot that Ronnie would play himself but other players tend to do

:37:45.:37:48.

it slightly different. It just depends how he feels. As I say, he

:37:49.:37:52.

has a couple of loose reds but he might go straight into the pink. No,

:37:53.:37:57.

he's going to play for the loose ones. The one at the back of the

:37:58.:38:02.

pack, if he gets on that in a few shots time, then he can open the

:38:03.:38:06.

reds. Yes, Dennis. He may play for that when he leaves the cue ball low

:38:07.:38:11.

and pots the red and screws off the pack and you bring the reds into

:38:12.:38:15.

play. And you take position. So it all depends on how he goes about it.

:38:16.:38:24.

There's the shot he's got now. He has a choice. He can generally power

:38:25.:38:28.

it through but generally they go back for the black and hopefully

:38:29.:38:39.

bring a few more reds into play. A lot more pressure on this shot than

:38:40.:38:42.

there should have been. Excellent, must have read your book

:38:43.:39:02.

there. John Parrot was probably the best in the game when he was potting

:39:03.:39:07.

there. Should have had better positional play, shouldn't I! You

:39:08.:39:11.

can only just see the top of the ball. Thinking about that first

:39:12.:39:19.

session, I think if there were two players going into it 2-2, I would

:39:20.:39:24.

have been slightly happy with Neil Robertson. Obviously he was 2-1 down

:39:25.:39:27.

in the match so it goes without saying just to level it is great.

:39:28.:39:31.

But I just think on the balance of play, I think that Ronnie was

:39:32.:39:35.

slightly better than him in the opening session. But what you've

:39:36.:39:38.

done with O'Sullivan is establish yourself in the match that you

:39:39.:39:43.

aren't going to let him run away and you kept the crowd fairly quiet. So

:39:44.:39:50.

2-2 at the interval for Neil would have been a pretty decent score. And

:39:51.:39:59.

he's starting this frame like he started the match.

:40:00.:40:06.

Still a couple more reds available after this one.

:40:07.:40:19.

Just to the left on the back of that little bunch of reds, there's also

:40:20.:40:29.

one that's potable. And the one that he's dropping on. And then, he might

:40:30.:40:38.

leave himself on the black to cannon into the reds because he's not that

:40:39.:40:43.

many pots away from securing the frame with one visit - a visit that

:40:44.:40:47.

started with a Neil Robertson special.

:40:48.:41:02.

He's got the angle to play the cannon now. This will determine

:41:03.:41:07.

whether he's going to win the frame at this visit. He wants to cannon

:41:08.:41:12.

the red that's in the middle there. But he wanted to play that with a

:41:13.:41:18.

bit of screw. He's done that in there. Needed to have a bit of screw

:41:19.:41:24.

on it so when he cannoned that, he came ae towards the left-hand side

:41:25.:41:28.

of the table, but he just put it in there. He must have thought when he

:41:29.:41:32.

played it, he was bound to be on one. But if he played the screw

:41:33.:41:36.

shot, he was virtually guaranteed he would have been. Yeah, and now he's

:41:37.:41:41.

only 59 points a very healthy lead. But not with the way that the ball

:41:42.:41:47.

was situated. That was far from being safe against an opponent like

:41:48.:41:54.

Ronnie O'Sullivan. So he could do with putting something on to a

:41:55.:41:57.

cushion if he's playing a safety shot here just as a little bit of

:41:58.:42:01.

insurance. But it's not going to be easy po put the red safe and

:42:02.:42:06.

guarantee a good position for the cue ball.

:42:07.:42:13.

I mean, he could possibly take the pot on but he's going to need a bit

:42:14.:42:20.

of help. He's going to need the swan neck, I think he's asking for. We've

:42:21.:42:25.

got three types of spider under the table there. With the extended

:42:26.:42:33.

spider. I mean, he can play this as a shot to nothing but it's awkward

:42:34.:42:37.

cueing. He's going to need the extension on the cue. He won't be

:42:38.:42:41.

able to really see the shot because he's so far away from it. His eye

:42:42.:42:47.

line, he'll just have to judge it because the cue will be so far up in

:42:48.:42:51.

the air. I mean, it helps that he's just over six feet tall. So he'll

:42:52.:42:59.

play the pot and play the safety shot also. Awkward.

:43:00.:43:15.

Yes, very difficult that shot. Certainly striking down as well and

:43:16.:43:21.

also trying to get some safety with it. It's one of those shots that if

:43:22.:43:25.

you play all out for the pot, you've got a better chance. If you try to

:43:26.:43:30.

get a two in one shot, sometimes you don't get the safety and you don't

:43:31.:43:37.

get the pot. So, can Ronnie make a counterpunch? And after all the hard

:43:38.:43:47.

work at the start of the frame from Neil Robertson... Will he have set

:43:48.:43:51.

the frame up for Ronnie O'Sullivan to come and steal it? The way that

:43:52.:43:57.

the reds are, Dennis, they're lovely, aren't they! Couldn't be

:43:58.:44:04.

better, John. Even the one next to the pink will be available because

:44:05.:44:08.

as he pots the head, they're clearing the path for another.

:44:09.:44:13.

Straight on the black but that doesn't matter. No problem. A little

:44:14.:44:19.

bit of reverse side here. Just to spin off the cushion to the right.

:44:20.:44:25.

Oh, hang on! What has he played there? I was going to say, it was a

:44:26.:44:29.

careless shot the one before. I know for a player with visibility, a

:44:30.:44:33.

straight shot with a little bit of side shouldn't be a problem but he

:44:34.:44:40.

shouldn't have been straight. But there's such a margin for error here

:44:41.:44:45.

and just over hit that. It's a lively cloth but that was... Very

:44:46.:44:50.

poor. Now, can he cut this one in? I mean, what a shot this would be. No.

:44:51.:45:03.

So that... Excellent opportunity has disappeared rapidly.

:45:04.:45:21.

Neil Robertson can't contain his excitement. He must have thought

:45:22.:45:27.

that the frame was going. Ball all in the open the way that Ronnie had

:45:28.:45:31.

been hitting it this afternoon when he had chances and he'd been cueing

:45:32.:45:37.

beautifully. I was amazed that he was back at the table.

:45:38.:45:53.

It would be very interesting to see how that affects Ronnie O'Sullivan.

:45:54.:46:03.

He's looked very focused this afternoon. But inside, he will be

:46:04.:46:17.

seething at what he's just done. If you want to give your opponent any

:46:18.:46:22.

more confidence, keep doing what you've just done. And they'll be

:46:23.:46:26.

feeding off that. This has been going less than 12

:46:27.:47:31.

minutes. A little bit of an exhibition shot

:47:32.:47:54.

there. So much there. Looked like the white was going to stop near the

:47:55.:47:59.

cushion behind the black and inside, just spun it up the table.

:48:00.:48:11.

And there's another exhibition shot from the Australian.

:48:12.:48:21.

And is that in? Two visits, Neil Robertson. An earlier break of 59.

:48:22.:48:28.

Ronnie had a chance to counterattack. He didn't take it and

:48:29.:48:32.

nearly cleared up with 62. The Australian leads 3-2 frames.

:48:33.:48:52.

And that's a pretty good break off shot. I mean, if the red wasn't near

:48:53.:49:01.

the black, he would have a go at the long red in the left-hand corner and

:49:02.:49:05.

play it as a shot to nothing, but because of the red next to the

:49:06.:49:09.

black, he can't. He would leave that on. So he's just containing the

:49:10.:49:16.

escape off the side cushion. Which could have been judged a little

:49:17.:49:21.

better. Doesn't want to be leaving any sort of pot for Neil. I know

:49:22.:49:27.

it's awkward bridging so he's not even contemplating that red to the

:49:28.:49:30.

left of the blue. Well, he holds his hand up. A nice

:49:31.:49:39.

little flick. And that is another careless one

:49:40.:50:01.

from Ronnie. You can't just keep presenting

:50:02.:50:33.

opportunities. Well, you can if he misses them. Started to look

:50:34.:50:36.

worrying for Ronnie in that frame. Like he was losing momentum. He can

:50:37.:50:40.

go between the red and the black there. Well, he decided that was a

:50:41.:50:46.

little bit risky. On the wrong side of the bl. Possibly could have held

:50:47.:50:48.

for the black. Six. Going to have to swing this

:50:49.:51:16.

around again. 7. Such a good shot. Controlled that you'd unclear. --

:51:17.:51:25.

beautifully. Played that really well. Well, how does that look?

:51:26.:51:32.

Pretty good. 13. Just OK. I thought that red

:51:33.:52:01.

would block the blue. But it is easily possible. Just wondering,

:52:02.:52:14.

even that little shot Rob missed. How important that is. The first

:52:15.:52:17.

opportunity. It is little things like that in these matches that make

:52:18.:52:27.

all the difference. Hanging with the top boys. 18. 19. There's the shot

:52:28.:52:39.

in the little pocket. It has gone to Ronnie. Will it be

:52:40.:53:00.

costly? 22. 23. Pink, out of commission. The black is awkward.

:53:01.:53:04.

May be in the right corner. Perfect angle on the blue. The black is

:53:05.:53:19.

available but needs to be straight on this red so he can roll it in. No

:53:20.:53:24.

threat on the red. Has to wait for another chance. Back into the blue

:53:25.:53:32.

again here. A slight change of plan again. 1 of those shots where you

:53:33.:53:44.

err on the side of being pacey just in case. Oh. You don't want to be

:53:45.:53:52.

missing the green. Ronnie O'Sullivan. 29. I put that to a

:53:53.:54:10.

lapse in concentration. Maybe a little of the previous frame in his

:54:11.:54:14.

mind. If he has not got position he has been very lucky. Neil Robertson

:54:15.:54:19.

is looking at that right in the back. Does it pot? It is difficult

:54:20.:54:24.

to know. Well, that was your answer. Didn't

:54:25.:54:51.

expect him to make such a poor attempt at

:54:52.:54:57.

That. He is giving Ronnie an easy comeback. You cannot leave him these

:54:58.:55:11.

longshots. He is good at them. That is a useful cannon on the blue.

:55:12.:55:27.

Let us show you this terrific long pot again. He has got an angle on

:55:28.:55:38.

the brown to get back up to the reds.

:55:39.:55:58.

You have to say, one or two worrying signs that Ronnie is looking second

:55:59.:56:04.

best in the match. Careen off the spot which you would not expect him

:56:05.:56:12.

to miss ever. -- green. 6. Make no mistake about it, the Australian,

:56:13.:56:18.

Robertson, will pick up on those. That will give him a little extra

:56:19.:56:20.

boost. As a competitor, you can remember as

:56:21.:56:34.

well as anybody, when you see a weakness in your partner, it is up

:56:35.:56:38.

to you to make the most of it. That is what Neil Robertson is doing. 14.

:56:39.:56:52.

21. Can he bring any reds out? He has to force them through and bring

:56:53.:57:04.

the single red out. That was a good shot.

:57:05.:57:14.

A little bit more on that. He may have to go up the table. Is the blue

:57:15.:57:29.

is available he could play on that. It would be nice to get it back but

:57:30.:57:33.

not essential. That is what he has in mind, to pop the red and get back

:57:34.:57:42.

onto the blue and get back to the scoring end of the tabe. -- table.

:57:43.:57:51.

Having a look to see if there were three reds behind the pink. I do not

:57:52.:57:56.

think that is on. What do you do hear? Play for the single red? He

:57:57.:58:03.

has a natural angle to play a cannon into the pink and three reds, but it

:58:04.:58:07.

is not a big target. That is the angle he has. If he wants to play

:58:08.:58:12.

into the pink. He is looking at the single red. He is looking at the

:58:13.:58:20.

options here. Yeah, I do not blame him there. If he can pop this red...

:58:21.:58:31.

But the cue ball has gone further. It is quite an easy cannon into the

:58:32.:58:36.

pink and blue reds. It was awkward for him. He did not want to risk

:58:37.:58:47.

potting the blue and disturb the three reds and pink. He did not cue

:58:48.:58:56.

that well. Neil Robertson, 35. Just cued across that one slightly. For a

:58:57.:59:03.

Potter like Neil Robertson, you would have to say that is a poor

:59:04.:59:06.

miss. A nice little half ball on the blue.

:59:07.:59:28.

This is all about the cannon here. Need do is to open up and land on 1.

:59:29.:59:33.

That would be a massive favour. APPLAUSE

:59:34.:59:33.

. Six. Yes, nice to have plenty of

:59:34.:59:56.

enthusiasm. But just shouting out at the wrong time can put the player

:59:57.:00:00.

off. I mentioned earlier it would be seriously worrying times if he does

:00:01.:00:03.

not get this 1. These are absolutely lovely now. Levelling the match at

:00:04.:00:22.

three each. OK. Green to brown could be the only slight problem, but you

:00:23.:00:26.

wouldn't expect it. Certainly 4. Another 1 of those that might go all

:00:27.:00:34.

the way, John. Yeah. Neil Robertson will be sitting in his chair and

:00:35.:00:38.

kicking himself about the red that he missed. It was not easy. But he

:00:39.:00:44.

was in command in the frame. Would not fancy knocking that 1 in. Just

:00:45.:00:55.

needs to make sure of the green. 24 is the difference. This is to secure

:00:56.:01:09.

the frame. APPLAUSE. Did not have to play position on the brown, but he

:01:10.:01:18.

did. And a good response from Ronnie. And once again, all square.

:01:19.:01:20.

Great match. 42. 48. Well, the Australian, Robertson, a

:01:21.:01:42.

chance to open up a two-frame advantage but did not take it.

:01:43.:01:47.

Ronnie O'Sullivan took his chance. All square, three frames each.

:01:48.:02:08.

Now, what is the angle like that he has left for Neil? Has he got a pot?

:02:09.:03:18.

Yep. There it goes. You never know where the red that you play is going

:03:19.:03:30.

to go. But that has finished up OK. A very attacking shot on here.

:03:31.:03:33.

Whether he will take it, I don't know. No, he has decided to play the

:03:34.:03:37.

safety shot. There's a pot with the red on the

:03:38.:03:53.

right-hand side. He was not having any of that. He has taken the pot

:03:54.:04:07.

on, but look at the cue ball. It will go to the black and reds. Where

:04:08.:04:11.

will it finished up? Finding a gap. Has he got a shot on the green? If

:04:12.:04:20.

he had the green, he is right-handed, over 6 feet tall, he

:04:21.:04:24.

has got quite a stretch. But even then, he would have to force this.

:04:25.:04:36.

And he could miss the pot if he tried to hit it too hard. It looks

:04:37.:04:40.

tight on the cushion. He has cued it well. Just to make

:04:41.:04:48.

the pot. He'd just misjudged it slightly. A similar sort of shot for

:04:49.:05:05.

Ronnie. Neil Robertson found the gap. Where will the cue ball go this

:05:06.:05:19.

time? This is a little hard. He has to power this. Brilliantly struck

:05:20.:05:24.

and controlled. 8. Perfect. Just feel with this

:05:25.:06:22.

match, the way it has been going, the boys mentioned in the studio

:06:23.:06:26.

that one player could step up and grab hold of the match with scoring.

:06:27.:06:28.

They could run away with it. 21s. 22. 1 red at the back of the bunch.

:06:29.:06:48.

Let us see how he gets on to that red.

:06:49.:06:56.

He has left it in such a way he can develop a few more. Does not help

:06:57.:07:08.

his position, though. 13. Stumbling through. Getting the cue ball

:07:09.:07:19.

running through it. One good cue in here. That is exactly what you got.

:07:20.:07:24.

Beautifully struck as well. 37. He did the right thing like a

:07:25.:07:52.

golfer. He had not made up his mind and got up on the shot and went back

:07:53.:07:56.

down again. That is the worst thing you can do, change your mind and

:07:57.:08:02.

then continue. A lot better. Had to strike down on that. It had to be

:08:03.:08:05.

straight through the middle of the white. Very well cued. 43. Striking

:08:06.:08:23.

down on it, right the way through, then back up for the brown.

:08:24.:08:28.

A lot better than it looked. He can obviously play some sort of cannon

:08:29.:08:48.

of the blue into the reds. But he is worried about losing the cue ball.

:08:49.:08:54.

Thinking about coming off the angle with the brown. It is time to

:08:55.:08:57.

guarantee position here as opposed to taking a chance. He took too long

:08:58.:09:15.

on that. Is he going to fluke it. Surely not! No reaction from me but

:09:16.:09:21.

that is one of the biggest is flukes you could ever see. Did not make up

:09:22.:09:30.

his mind. Did not want to risk the cannon. Then missed the brown by a

:09:31.:09:36.

long way. But how did he fluke it into the corner? He has just played

:09:37.:09:43.

a few strange... 47. It is as if he lost his concentration somewhat. I

:09:44.:09:49.

mean, he just got down on the plant. If that is down you do not just get

:09:50.:10:02.

down and hammer it like that. It is as if he felt guilty for getting the

:10:03.:10:04.

fluke. Well, it might come back to haunt

:10:05.:10:20.

him, the way he played that plant there. But, I mean, just to hit it

:10:21.:10:26.

that hard, did not give it a chance. But this was amazing. He just could

:10:27.:10:34.

not make up his mind. And in the end, he missed it by a long way. And

:10:35.:10:42.

then to see it go in-off the red. Meanwhile, this is not a

:10:43.:11:12.

straightforward chance for Neil Robertson. Left-handed. Those 2 reds

:11:13.:11:31.

on the left-hand side cushion will be as much a problem for him as a

:11:32.:11:34.

right-hander. Nevertheless, these are not ideally situated. APPLAUSE.

:11:35.:11:39.

13. 14. As the option, he could play

:11:40.:11:58.

this firmly and click the red out. He could have played it firmly, as

:11:59.:12:07.

if he missed the cannon... Well, he chose not to do it that way.

:12:08.:12:18.

30. Not the best position he has ever played. He is probably already

:12:19.:13:16.

thinking about the two awkward reds. One very much so. The other not too

:13:17.:13:20.

badly placed. Before the break, on the black, he could have tried to

:13:21.:13:26.

flick that. I know he is left-handed, but that is a tricky

:13:27.:13:32.

shot, where that is. That is to be negotiated later. We will soon find

:13:33.:13:43.

out. APPLAUSE. 33. He has got a slight handle on the black. He is

:13:44.:13:49.

left-handed. He can play a drop in behind it. Or he can try and get it

:13:50.:13:54.

out. Not be perfect angle. He would have to really try and power this

:13:55.:13:59.

in. And he certainly powered this in. But not quite far enough. It

:14:00.:14:08.

looks like it will be a safety. And Ronnie O'Sullivan will be relieved

:14:09.:14:17.

because I think he felt that he might have messed up. But that was a

:14:18.:14:21.

great effort to bring that into play. Neil Robertson, 40. So, still

:14:22.:14:32.

in the balance in this frame. When Ronnie missed the brown. He had an

:14:33.:14:39.

alternative shot that we might be able to show you. I thought he could

:14:40.:14:47.

take the blue and get the cannon on the two reds. But it could not make

:14:48.:14:53.

up his mind. He got the brown and missed it. This is a little bit

:14:54.:15:05.

pacey. Oh, the blue, the blue has come to his rescue there. Yeah. Neil

:15:06.:15:08.

Robertson raises his eyebrows slightly walking towards the com

:15:09.:15:14.

box. Thinking that was going to be a chance. The greenies in the corner.

:15:15.:15:29.

-- green is. There you go. Yep. Nice blue, he is saying. Because if it

:15:30.:15:47.

slips past the blue, the red, he might have a chance, maybe not to

:15:48.:15:51.

pot the red, but certainly to put Ronnie in trouble. He has to

:15:52.:15:54.

negotiate the swerve. He could be knocking it towards the other

:15:55.:16:03.

pocket. So, he was in a lot of trouble there. And he will take

:16:04.:16:06.

that. He might not like the next shot. Trying to get in behind the

:16:07.:16:11.

black here. . He has not hit it hard enough. He has missed a trick there.

:16:12.:16:27.

I see the ties, they are wearing normal ones, you can see him pulling

:16:28.:16:31.

at it. That is why we used to wear bowties, because a normal 1 gets in

:16:32.:16:39.

your way slightly. Oh. I am a massive fan of Neil Robertson, I

:16:40.:16:43.

really am, but he has played 2 was 3 shots today that are totally out of

:16:44.:16:49.

character for him. He never usually does that.

:16:50.:16:56.

One. For him to play that, obviously, do not put the object

:16:57.:17:04.

ball over the pocket. He has overhit that and now it will

:17:05.:17:36.

be awkward because he needs the brown also. He is having a quick

:17:37.:17:45.

look at the scoreboard there. 15 ahead. Green and brown, and he will

:17:46.:17:49.

need assistance. I do not know if he can get it with the rest. He may

:17:50.:17:53.

just be able to get it passed the blue. But if he gets it too card. --

:17:54.:18:03.

hard. You can try to flick it in. That was the good news about that

:18:04.:18:15.

shot. Well, one could long pot, and we are right down the line of the

:18:16.:18:18.

shot. It is there. 16. APPLAUSE. Ronnie O'Sullivan, 16. A lapse in

:18:19.:18:32.

concentration, but Neil needs... Settle down, please. He needs a

:18:33.:18:53.

snooker, as you can see. Did that previously in the match when he

:18:54.:18:56.

missed a pink in the middle and had to wait another 10 minutes. This is

:18:57.:19:07.

the blue again. Looks like nothing, but it stops your momentum. You

:19:08.:19:11.

think you are going to win the frame but it is all over. It gives you 10-

:19:12.:19:16.

15 minutes of complete aggravation for no reason at all.

:19:17.:19:26.

It's been a funny frame this. It's had a little bit of everything.

:19:27.:19:40.

Only needing the one snooker, there is no way he will be potting the

:19:41.:19:53.

blue if he had a chance. More chance of the snooker with pink and black

:19:54.:19:58.

on the table. But as well as playing for the snooker, you have the try

:19:59.:20:00.

and keep the object ball safe. Well, he didn't mean to pot that!

:20:01.:20:10.

LAUGHS He's looking down... Didn't plan to

:20:11.:20:16.

pot that. But he might be able to get by with the black here. More

:20:17.:20:21.

difficult now with just the one Snookering ball on the table. And

:20:22.:20:26.

more difficult, Dennis, because the black is off the spot. The cushion

:20:27.:20:30.

for the black - easier to get a snooker behind. But where it is

:20:31.:20:34.

now... You have got to be absolutely perfect. You they would he would

:20:35.:20:38.

have to get it right tight behind. He has one real good shot left at it

:20:39.:20:42.

and it's not great, what he's got left anyway. So, good luck with this

:20:43.:20:45.

one. I will tell you what - it's a pretty

:20:46.:20:57.

good effort if the pink holds up. Just ran a bit too far.

:20:58.:21:00.

APPLAUSE Not a bad effort.

:21:01.:21:10.

In or over is how you may that shot. CHEERING

:21:11.:21:17.

That's in! It's a frame either play would have won, but in the end

:21:18.:21:21.

Ronnie O'Sullivan. He will be absolutely delighted. He gets himg

:21:22.:21:23.

into a four frames to 3 lead. A good length with the cue ball, but

:21:24.:21:44.

there is a bit of a free pot for Ronnie. He can go around the back of

:21:45.:21:47.

the black and take this on. An interesting part in that last

:21:48.:22:18.

frame, Dennis. It ultimately went down to the last red. There was a

:22:19.:22:23.

shot where I was saying Roberts could have potted the red. If he

:22:24.:22:27.

plays it nice and firm and plays that, knocks it out, he could end up

:22:28.:22:31.

going on to win the frame F he missed it he was a red baulk. So a

:22:32.:22:36.

bit of a shot to nothing really. I think he may have missed a trick

:22:37.:22:40.

there. Ultimately that red was the last one he had to get and he

:22:41.:22:42.

couldn't get on it. CHEERING

:22:43.:23:00.

Well, that was what we call an Aussie special! I mean, one of the

:23:01.:23:08.

greatest long potters the game's ever seen, without a doubt.

:23:09.:23:12.

Tremendous cuing. I mean, such a hard pot anyway. But to knock it in

:23:13.:23:16.

with a top spin Yan get back on the correct side of the blue is just a

:23:17.:23:19.

wonderful shot. Yeah. I think I mentioned at the

:23:20.:23:28.

start of the tournament how many great left-handers there are in the

:23:29.:23:32.

game and what great potters they are. Going way back, there was only

:23:33.:23:39.

a few. There was a great potter from South Africa.

:23:40.:23:45.

But now there's... I mean, there's so many great left-landed players.

:23:46.:23:56.

Then Jimmy White came on the seen, Barry Hawkins...

:23:57.:24:01.

Well, he knocked in an unbelievable opening red. How do you see a

:24:02.:24:10.

missing one like that? I know. If anything, I was looking at Neil

:24:11.:24:14.

Robertson today and haven't seen him play much this season other than

:24:15.:24:20.

when we ump # -- we bumped into him. His concentration is never as high

:24:21.:24:24.

as it usually is, that's the only thing you can say, because he would

:24:25.:24:28.

never miss a shot like that. CHEERING

:24:29.:24:34.

Great pot from Ronnie. Did well to avoid the cannon on that red there.

:24:35.:24:43.

So, # -- Ronnie's turn to sense weakness in his opponent. Can he

:24:44.:24:47.

make the most of it? I agree with Stephen Hendry -

:24:48.:25:11.

standard-wise probably one of the worst matches. Although it's still

:25:12.:25:19.

very, very exciting. But no century break, highest 74, Ronnie's highest

:25:20.:25:26.

63. But fascinating stuff. Yeah. Interpret similar to yesterday's

:25:27.:25:30.

match with Mark Selby and Mark Williams. It doesn't have to be one

:25:31.:25:33.

with the snooker all the time to make it fascinating. A brilliant

:25:34.:25:36.

match yesterday and Mark Williams desperately unlucky. He played some

:25:37.:25:39.

fantastic match play. What is going on here at the minute?

:25:40.:25:51.

What is going on? Are we now at the stage where both players are maybe

:25:52.:25:56.

trying to that little bit too hard? Well, he got a heavy contact there.

:25:57.:26:20.

The red's gone in, but it's spoiled the position outside of the shot.

:26:21.:26:34.

Supposed to be fair, in this year's Masters there hasn't been a great

:26:35.:26:40.

deal of kicks. Less than there has been for quite some time, I think.

:26:41.:26:44.

Unfortunately when it happened, look it did yesterday -- like it did

:26:45.:26:47.

yesterday for Mark Williams on the blue. Neil Robertson having to take

:26:48.:26:51.

on here, it was magnified. But this is a big shot to take on. . Wow!

:26:52.:26:55.

APPLAUSE What a pot! To do it after the

:26:56.:27:00.

disappointment of the kick and the loss of position is fabulous.

:27:01.:27:10.

Think he is still keen on winning this match after that shot? As I

:27:11.:27:14.

say, they both want it so badly. But it has to be said, Ronnie was in

:27:15.:27:31.

the balls and he was looking good and... He will have just gone to

:27:32.:27:41.

clean hi # -- clean his hands. A little bit sticky maybe.

:27:42.:28:18.

That's gone wrong. It is amazing. I was just about to say with these

:28:19.:28:25.

players, you normally expect to them a win with one visit. But what's

:28:26.:28:30.

been happening - there is all sorts of hitting things going on. There is

:28:31.:28:34.

another one, when it ran on to the red and out of position. I don't

:28:35.:28:38.

think it is December Pratt. He has the one insurance policy in the

:28:39.:28:42.

baulk area. May have lost position there, but the way his long

:28:43.:28:46.

potting's been, this will be going in.

:28:47.:28:48.

APPLAUSE Not all bad news there. Got a chance

:28:49.:29:02.

here. He can pot the yellow off the said cushion and into the pack, if

:29:03.:29:08.

he wants to. The red over the middle pocket would be there as well.

:29:09.:29:12.

That's what he played. But he hit that so badly he was nowhere near

:29:13.:29:17.

it! I don't know about how, John, but you just sense... Normally you

:29:18.:29:21.

would say they are in, they are going to win the frame you sense

:29:22.:29:25.

with what's going on, they are not confident of winning the frame with

:29:26.:29:28.

one visit. If there is a three-ball plant what a bonus that is. I don't

:29:29.:29:33.

think it will go in... Unless there is a gap between the two reds. P

:29:34.:29:37.

those two reds are close together it will squeeze it away from the

:29:38.:29:41.

pocket. Well, let's see. The first two to the left... Close together,

:29:42.:29:46.

the angle he's got, he won't make - he will squeeze it away from the

:29:47.:29:48.

pocket, I think. Well, from that angle maybe he could

:29:49.:30:00.

possibly make it, because there is a little gap between the reds. But

:30:01.:30:11.

still doesn't fan it is. -- fancy it . Well...

:30:12.:30:13.

CHEERING 25. He would be kicking himself.

:30:14.:30:20.

Such a margin for error there. Comes off there, the side of the cushion,

:30:21.:30:24.

goes into the pack with the balls, red over the middle. Looking like a

:30:25.:30:30.

frame-winning chance but it's gone now.

:30:31.:30:44.

APPLAUSE Good stuff, though. I don't know

:30:45.:30:48.

what's going to happen next! LAUGHS

:30:49.:30:53.

What happened next? That used to be a programme. How many years were you

:30:54.:30:55.

the captain? What happened next? Well, he thought he could pot that.

:30:56.:31:11.

And the white needs to keep running, otherwise he's left it. Yeah. I

:31:12.:31:14.

think he can get past the blue. CHEERING

:31:15.:31:39.

Just someone shouted out there, "Get in." Before the white got near the

:31:40.:31:43.

red. We don't need anyone like that shouting while the player is playing

:31:44.:31:49.

the shot because it will put the player he's supporting off.

:31:50.:31:56.

Once again, though, the position... Not ideal for Ronnie. This - the

:31:57.:32:05.

choice of it up into the yellow pocket, which is what he's doing,

:32:06.:32:09.

but he played for it in the centre. CROWD: Oh!

:32:10.:32:12.

CHEERING He should be taking this one! Quiet

:32:13.:32:21.

please! Listen, you get enough bad luck at

:32:22.:32:36.

times in a game. If you get a fluke like this, why not take full

:32:37.:32:43.

advantage? Left of the cushion. Then seemed to come back in. I think

:32:44.:32:47.

there was a bit of swerve on it, hitting the angle. Yep. Arced it

:32:48.:32:50.

around into the pocket. I'm with you - you get a fluke, you

:32:51.:32:59.

make sure you get the most of it. You see it's the jaws, and then it

:33:00.:33:06.

hits the caution and... Flick off the brown? Wow! That brown's been

:33:07.:33:13.

pretty good, hasn't it? It should have been in the other one, but of

:33:14.:33:17.

course he played the plant afterwards with not a lot of care.

:33:18.:33:20.

But what a fluke that was! He didn't play that too well. That's

:33:21.:33:38.

a bit careless there. Miss challenged the cannon completely.

:33:39.:33:43.

He's just battling himself a little bit at the moment. You can see the

:33:44.:33:50.

about jebt disappointment on -- abject disappointment on his face

:33:51.:33:53.

when he losses position. Welcome to our world Ronnie. That's what

:33:54.:33:56.

happens to most players. APPLAUSE

:33:57.:34:14.

Welcome back to Ronnie's world! LAUGHS

:34:15.:34:19.

Yeah. For all the great play and misses and bad safeties Yan # --

:34:20.:34:28.

safeties Yan great safeties, you can't beat a little bit of luck.

:34:29.:34:32.

What a fluke that was! CHEERING

:34:33.:34:45.

Very focused. Great temperament, but that was hard to take. Because it

:34:46.:34:54.

means now that he's going to have to win the last three frames. He's

:34:55.:35:01.

quite a while capable of doing that, as Ronnie overscrews the yellow. But

:35:02.:35:05.

that doesn't matter. He will stay in the seat. Or he might leave the

:35:06.:35:10.

arena just to compose himself, but it doesn't matter about the green.

:35:11.:35:15.

That was an unbelievable fluke for Ronnie O'Sullivan!

:35:16.:35:16.

CHEERING No wonder he's leaving the arena.

:35:17.:35:22.

He's now just one frame away from the place in the semifinal. It's 5-3

:35:23.:35:25.

to The Rocket. Ronnie, a bit short with the

:35:26.:35:49.

break-off shot. Could do with a long pot here.

:35:50.:35:55.

Given the cue a clean there, just to make sure it's nice and smooth. He

:35:56.:36:47.

could do with a couple of Robertson specials. He's at the stage now

:36:48.:36:54.

where he knows he can't afford many more misses.

:36:55.:37:10.

Just having a look there to see if that red at the back of the black is

:37:11.:37:34.

pottable. At some stage... Obviously not playing on it there, but he's

:37:35.:37:38.

just seeing if he can pot that and get it away are the black. It will

:37:39.:37:44.

free it. But... I don't know about that one.

:37:45.:37:53.

Here he is again, checking just to see. All those ones you have to keep

:37:54.:38:04.

the qubl high, so -- cue ball high so when you get the natural angle

:38:05.:38:08.

you can screw off for the black. It is a tough angle for the black,

:38:09.:38:15.

certainly on these tables. And he would be disgusted with that. You

:38:16.:38:19.

can see him turn his head away because the one thing he didn't want

:38:20.:38:24.

to do was come low. Just got into that a bit too much.

:38:25.:38:32.

Not even sure that pots. It's very tight.

:38:33.:38:42.

Yeah. Not from angle. Had the white been near and to the right he would

:38:43.:38:48.

have been OK. He worked that out an if you shots ago. Stephen mentioned

:38:49.:38:58.

in the studio that struggling for positional play today. A good

:38:59.:38:59.

example. A very good example. A good opening pot. Played as a shot

:39:00.:39:35.

to nothing. Because if the red doesn't go in - have a look where

:39:36.:39:39.

the cue ball was. The fact he potted it, he knew he was always going to

:39:40.:39:41.

have a chance of the brown. CROWD: Oh! Boy, to hit it that hard

:39:42.:40:05.

and expect the pocket to accept the brown was asking something.

:40:06.:40:28.

Foul! Oh, he fouled it. He was looking and he may have thought he

:40:29.:40:38.

was OK, but he touched it with his sleeve. Yeah. Bad news on the foul.

:40:39.:40:49.

Good news was - that red came across and hit the black and didn't leave

:40:50.:40:55.

one on. Could have been all bad for Neil there.

:40:56.:41:25.

APPLAUSE Interesting, though, Ronnie tapped

:41:26.:41:34.

the table a few times. He tapped the table before the white got anywhere

:41:35.:41:38.

near the cushion. He knew where it was going to finish up.

:41:39.:41:45.

Don't mind him missing altogether with the first attempt... Much

:41:46.:41:53.

better doing that than hitting the red thick. He will have another go

:41:54.:42:01.

at it. He will want to really make contact this time, because three

:42:02.:42:06.

misses from this situation and you lose the frame. So, can he get a

:42:07.:42:09.

thin enough contact here? No. The referee will now warn

:42:10.:42:21.

Ronnie. I said earlier anything else going to happen in this match?

:42:22.:42:25.

Certainly he won't lose a frame from missing the reds she times?

:42:26.:42:35.

UMPIRE: I have to warn you this time. Put plenty on chalk of the

:42:36.:42:40.

tip. The last thing you want to do is miscue.

:42:41.:42:48.

CHEERING AND APPLAUSE Well! In the end it was a terrific

:42:49.:42:57.

safety shot he played. But... He hasn't reacted, but he couldn't stop

:42:58.:43:01.

smiling there. It looked, from that... He must have tried to plant!

:43:02.:43:05.

LAUGHS I will tell you what - this is a big

:43:06.:43:08.

shot to take on. Well, you were right, John. It was a

:43:09.:43:13.

big shot. Don't be giving too many chances to

:43:14.:43:40.

someone like Neil Robertson. He was in the jaws of the pocket. So close.

:43:41.:43:45.

But very tough shot he took on there.

:43:46.:43:58.

Yes. Not a brilliance chance this. Blackcurrantly is out of commission

:43:59.:44:04.

-- black currently out of commission. Pink certainly is. Brown

:44:05.:44:06.

on the side cushion. Not perfect on the blue. I suppose

:44:07.:44:22.

he could take the green, being left-handed. It might actually be a

:44:23.:44:27.

natural angle back at the red at the bottom of the cluster, because that

:44:28.:44:33.

will pot. But is he hampered with his cuing? Mmm. Looks like it.

:44:34.:44:46.

He is looking at the blue to the middle pocket. This is a thin cut.

:44:47.:44:52.

He will go into the pink and reads and it will open the game up. Foul.

:44:53.:45:01.

That's a bit unlucky. It was a very thin snick required. He got the main

:45:02.:45:05.

part of the shot. Didn't quite enough get screw on it. But to go in

:45:06.:45:11.

off was very unfortunate indeed. Yeah. Added unfortunate part of that

:45:12.:45:15.

shot - I think he's opened the pink into a pottable position as well. I

:45:16.:45:19.

think the pink now goes - the red removed from the side of the pink -

:45:20.:45:24.

if Ronnie can pot this and come through, then he's got pink or blue

:45:25.:45:27.

that's available. What he needs to do is get his focus

:45:28.:46:23.

back that he had at the start of the match.

:46:24.:46:24.

APPLAUSE It has to be said, just a few little

:46:25.:46:31.

signs that he is getting a little frustrated with himself. He sets

:46:32.:46:35.

himself such high standards, Ronnie O'Sullivan.

:46:36.:46:54.

That was a good shot that Neil played there. Knew he would be

:46:55.:46:59.

clipping the red towards the corner, but as long as he could use the

:47:00.:47:03.

yellow, green or blue to cover it up, it was OK. Similar shot for

:47:04.:47:08.

Ronnie here, but Ronnie has to be careful with... Don't want to hit

:47:09.:47:12.

the pump in the middle pocket either. Has he covered it?

:47:13.:47:22.

He's covered the one closest to the pocket. And the one on the left-hand

:47:23.:47:29.

side he is hampered by the yellow. So, not great for Neil.

:47:30.:47:52.

I just noticed, John, something with Ronnie when down on the shot. It is

:47:53.:47:58.

as if he's moving around a little bit. He never used to do that. Rock

:47:59.:48:02.

solid. But detected just a little bit of movement while he was getting

:48:03.:48:13.

ready to deliver the cue. That was just a containing safety.

:48:14.:48:40.

A tough shot, these. Yeah. Not surprised he missed it actually. One

:48:41.:48:55.

of the ones... That is on the thin side. Ronnie isn't looking to see

:48:56.:48:59.

about the red on the right-hand side. He doesn't fancy that. Well,

:49:00.:49:04.

that, I suppose... He normally he could have potted that and got on

:49:05.:49:11.

the pink. Didn't even look at it, did he?

:49:12.:49:15.

Just while they are replacing it there, just... You see, there's

:49:16.:49:24.

where it is, nearly on the brown spot. Mmm. Looked as if he could

:49:25.:49:28.

take it on. Wouldn't have left a great deal but he had it replaced.

:49:29.:49:37.

Now! It's Robertson's turn to be warned. He won't even look at the

:49:38.:49:47.

red this time. Of course, if he did it and missed it three times then

:49:48.:49:51.

this would be frame and match. Do you know what I think happened? It

:49:52.:49:55.

happened in the Irish Masters, and I think Ken was playing Steve Davis.

:49:56.:50:02.

Was it Steve who lost the match with three consecutive misses? Yep. Yep.

:50:03.:50:07.

You're dead right. That's what happened.

:50:08.:50:10.

REFEREE: I have to warn you this time Neil. This will be too thick

:50:11.:50:13.

now. Needs to be very careful here. APPLAUSE

:50:14.:50:36.

Yep. Too thick. But I tell you what - he will be glad when it's finished

:50:37.:50:44.

T -- finished. The blue's come to his rescue.

:50:45.:50:54.

Played that with a loaded check side. Just to straighten the cue

:50:55.:50:59.

ball up. APPLAUSE

:51:00.:51:05.

He's played it very well. Where the reds have turned out, he's had a

:51:06.:51:11.

little bit of luck, of course. He's covered those two red near the

:51:12.:51:15.

corner pocket. Little bit of luck with one of the balls, but it was

:51:16.:51:22.

well played. On first glance, looks like a fair bit of trouble.

:51:23.:51:31.

Well, that is what he is faced with there. As you can see, a very

:51:32.:51:38.

difficult situation. He will have to give this one a

:51:39.:51:48.

little bit of thought, because he knows one mistake here and he could

:51:49.:51:54.

be out of this year's Masters. Yeah T two reds that are near the top

:51:55.:51:58.

corner, the bottom one, Neil was looking at trying to roll up and

:51:59.:52:03.

drop on. But if you don't get that right you are leaving a red into the

:52:04.:52:06.

middle pocket. That's what he's had a look at. If he can just come up

:52:07.:52:11.

dead weight and rest on it. But you have to get that right.

:52:12.:52:28.

Well, this is very delicate. It isn't going to reach. Foul.

:52:29.:52:37.

Oh that was the way he was trying to get in behind that red. Ronnie's not

:52:38.:52:46.

having the one in the middle pocket. So, obviously the... That pot isn't

:52:47.:52:51.

something he fancies. But he's got Neil in a right load of trouble

:52:52.:52:53.

here. Same shot, is it? Has he done the same thing again?

:52:54.:53:13.

And then... REFEREE: Foul. And a miss. Yep. He

:53:14.:53:20.

will have to be warned again. For the second time... That doesn't

:53:21.:53:25.

happen very often where a player is warned twice in one frame.

:53:26.:53:30.

REFEREE: I have to warn you again, Neil. You played a miss. You will

:53:31.:53:31.

lose the frame. Yeah. And the match. Oh! Well! He's given a foul away. 7

:53:32.:54:02.

points. But the... Black, will it go on its own spot! I think it's the

:54:03.:54:07.

ultimate whammy. I think everything pots.

:54:08.:54:10.

REFEREE: Settle down, please. Quiet now. Thank you! He is so many

:54:11.:54:15.

trouble. He thought he had to take on that pottable pot. There was no

:54:16.:54:20.

pocket to go in. But some of the balls were very awkward, but have a

:54:21.:54:29.

lack at how they have split up. For those to finish like that, and

:54:30.:54:32.

forget the black on the spot, with everything in the open, you couldn't

:54:33.:54:35.

ask for anything more. The only thing is... The way it's gone this

:54:36.:54:38.

afternoon, will it be over? They have played each other twice in

:54:39.:55:04.

the Masters. Neil one 6-1 in the semifinal 2015. Ronnie won 6-4 in

:55:05.:55:12.

Round 2 in 2010. Even that shot wasn't played up to

:55:13.:55:27.

his usual standards. You could see him down in shot, he was in two

:55:28.:55:32.

minds, the way he played. Obviously to knock the black he should be

:55:33.:55:36.

knocking this in. But just little unpositional blips from Ronnie

:55:37.:55:41.

O'Sullivan that you don't normally see. These are just spread lovely.

:55:42.:55:48.

No excuses now. Before this match started, we

:55:49.:56:02.

were... Thought we were going to be in for century breaks flying in all

:56:03.:56:06.

over the place. But... Ronnie's highest break had been 63. Neil's

:56:07.:56:11.

74. But... I will tell you what - there's been lots of 50s and 40s and

:56:12.:56:16.

misses. We've had a bit of everything. Yep. It's been great

:56:17.:56:21.

theatre this afternoon, that's for sure. You know, this audience this

:56:22.:56:27.

afternoon, OK, as you say, not centuries rolling off every frame,

:56:28.:56:31.

but it's been fascinating right the way through. It's been difficult to

:56:32.:56:36.

commentate on because we know what was going to happen. On occasions

:56:37.:56:40.

people looking like they are going to clear up, pole positions, and a

:56:41.:56:46.

few missed pots you wouldn't get. But fascinating nonetheless.

:56:47.:56:51.

APPLAUSE That's the frame and the match

:56:52.:56:59.

secure. Neil Robertson had a chance to go 4-2 in front. And for me, that

:57:00.:57:05.

was the big, big turning point in the match.

:57:06.:57:10.

The crowd here at Alexandra Palace have been very fair to both players.

:57:11.:57:18.

A lot of Ronnie fans here, but Neil Robertson's had terrific support

:57:19.:57:24.

also. But it's not going to be his year.

:57:25.:57:30.

Just looked as if he had lost a little bit of focus. He was very up

:57:31.:57:38.

for it. The start at match, but just seemed to lose his way towards the

:57:39.:57:43.

end, and... Probably because he set such a high standard.

:57:44.:57:46.

CHEERING AND APPLAUSE 61. He's had a few flukes here and

:57:47.:57:55.

there which always help. APPLAUSE

:57:56.:58:02.

Interesting... Well, he will be delighted, Damien Hurst, his good

:58:03.:58:05.

friend. It will be interesting to hear what Ronnie has to say about

:58:06.:58:08.

the match. CHEERING AND APPLAUSE

:58:09.:58:11.

Both players big smiles for each other. It's been a fascinating

:58:12.:58:19.

tussle between these two great players. There Ronnie acknowledges

:58:20.:58:21.

the crowd. He will be delighted. In the end a comfortable win, 6-3, for

:58:22.:58:28.

the Rocket. Curious match. But Ronnie O'Sullivan is over the line

:58:29.:58:33.

and into a 13th Masters semifinal. He's only ever lost one of those and

:58:34.:58:37.

ironically that was a couple of years ago to the very same Neil

:58:38.:58:41.

Robertson. He aadvantaged that one. We will be back with more live

:58:42.:58:45.

snooker in yet another quarterfinal. It is Mark Selby, the world number

:58:46.:58:51.

1, and threetime winner of the great event, against the runner-up, Barry

:58:52.:58:56.

Hawkins. We will catch you for 1:00pm BBC Two.

:58:57.:58:57.

Goodnight. Why would James Delaney hate

:58:58.:58:59.

the India so?

:59:00.:59:03.

Quarter-final highlights are introduced by Hazel Irvine from Alexandra Palace.


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