O'Sullivan only interested in match


O'Sullivan only interested in match

Ronnie O'Sullivan marks his 38th birthday on Thursday with a UK Championship quarter-final appearance - but any celebrations will be reserved for if he beats Stuart Bingham.

The 'Rocket' burned brightly and briefly on Wednesday night, wrapping up a 6-0 win over Robert Milkins inside 68 minutes and before the end of the interval on the other table.

O'Sullivan said afterwards: "I thought it'd be nice to still be in the tournament on my birthday.

"I don't like birthdays and I don't like presents and all that malarkey, so I just want to get on with my job and play.

"I'm here to play a tournament, I'm not here to celebrate birthdays - I want to start forgetting birthdays, to be fair, because I'm 38 and I feel like I'm giving everyone 10 years.

"I don't want to get sucked into that, singing me 'Happy Birthday', because I won't be happy about that.

"People pay money to come and see me play, not to sing me 'Happy Birthday'. I've got a big match on tomorrow and I need to approach it."

Both O'Sullivan and Neil Robertson feature in the afternoon session and prepared well by wrapping up their last-16 matches quickly.

Robertson beat close friend Joe Perry 6-1, though the scoreline was deceptive as both players struggled with the table conditions.

Robertson had to make a 95 break he labelled "ridiculous" to win the game, the world number one adding: "I'm sure Willie (Thorne) was pulling whatever hair he has left out of his head commentating on that one."

The Australian faces Stephen Maguire, a 6-3 winner over John Higgins on Tuesday, while O'Sullivan and Bingham resume hostilities less than a fortnight after a Champion of Champions final won by the former.

Bingham got through with a routine 6-1 win over David Morris and said of his next opponent: "Every time you play Ronnie, it's like a final.

"He's been missing a few but still getting through, he's maybe on his 'C' game but still getting through."

The evening sees Mark Selby face Barry Hawkins while Mark Allen takes on Ricky Walden.

Allen was expecting a strong pep talk from coach Terry Griffiths after his scrappy 6-4 win over Judd Trump.

"I'll probably have to ring Terry Griffiths and see if he can put his finger on anything," said the Antrim cueman.

"I'm sure he'll tell me a few home truths, kick me up the a*** over the phone."

Walden ended Ding Junhui's bid for a fourth successive ranking title with a 6-4 win while Selby beat Graeme Dott 6-2, ending the Scot's Masters hopes as Perry secured the last available place.

Hawkins got through with a 6-5 win over Shaun Murphy late on Tuesday night.

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