Ronnie O’Sullivan pulls out of Welsh Open as snooker legend reveals battle with ‘stage fright’ in message to fans

5 months ago 37

SNOOKER legend Ronnie O’Sullivan has announced that he will not take part in the Welsh Open next week due to “stage fright”.

The 48-year-old was set to return from his time off at the event in Llandudno.

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Ronnie O’Sullivan will not play at the Welsh Open[/caption]

O’Sullivan had been scheduled to face Liam Graham in a pre-qualifying match on Monday.

However, he announced on Saturday morning that he will not be able to play – as he opened up on his battle with anxiety.

A statement from O’Sullivan read: “Morning guys, I wanted to let you know that I’ve decided I’m not able to play in Llandudno next week.

“It’s hard to explain but for years I’ve suffered from stage fright at times, brought on by anxiety.

“It’s not something I can predict or control but I try to manage it as best as I can.

“I’m sorry to everyone who’s bought tickets but I just can’t get my cue out when I feel like this and I think this [is] what’s best for me right now.

“I still want to be around the tournament so I’ll be doing some work with Eurosport and I hope to see you all there.”

O’Sullivan pulled out of the German Masters last month for “health and wellbeing” reasons.

He admitted that it had been a “tiring and challenging season” for him so far despite his success.

The Rocket has won the last three tournaments he has entered and claimed the first two Triple Crown events of the season.

The Welsh Open will begin on Monday, February 12 and conclude on Sunday, February 18.

O’Sullivan has won the event four times, but not since 2016.

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