Un meci urmarit la rezultat pe worldsnooker, pare ca nu se compara ca traire cu un meci privit la televizor ; cu cateva exceptii : sa nu joace Ronnie o’Sullivan cu John Higgins, sa nu fie condus cu 8-2, si sa nu aiba reveniri spectaculoase ; pentru ca este exasperant sa vezi cum se misca o sagetica de un nume la altul si cum creste sau stagneaza punctajul, fara niciun comentariu, sau vreo imagine a mesei de joc. Deci nu am vazut meciul, dar l-am trait ca pe o finala de mondial intre Mark Williams si Ken Doherty, sau de masters intre Ronnie si Paul Hunter, sau ca pe jocurile de cosmar dintre acelasi Ronnie si Stephen Maguire. Un meci dupa care ai impresia stranie ca ai albit brusc si socant, din cauza emotiilor intense, a mainilor tremurande, a inimii pe care timp de o revenire nesperata ai simtit-o in stomac, a temerii de a spera nesperatul, de a indrazni apoi sa speri si de a fi dezamagit.
Declaratiile de dupa meci :
“I was sitting in my chair at 8-8 thinking ‘this is the usual for me’. It was amazing. If I’d lost it would have lived with me forever so it’s lucky I don’t have to go through that. When it got to 8-8 the pressure was back on Ronnie. In the last frame you go on to autopilot because the pressure is so great, that’s when all those hours of practice and your technique get you through.
I will be fine for the final tomorrow, because even though it was 9-8, it was free-flowing. Ding is back playing the way he can so it will be difficult. He’s started the season well so it will be a mammoth game.”
“John had chances from 8-2 up but he went off the boil, which was unlike him. To get to 8-8 flattered me and in the end it was the right result, a fair score would have been 9-4. I was hitting the balls too thick or too thin and couldn’t see the potting angle, I couldn’t even break off. I made a pact with myself at the start of this season not to get excited if I win or disappointed if I lose. Otherwise I’d get annoyed and frustrated and I don’t want to spend the rest of my career in that manner.”
Cat despre ceea ce s-a intamplat in frame-ul 13, cand dupa o serie de lovituri ratate Ronnie a atins bila neagra provocand o noua ratare si cedand astfel randul lui John, cei doi au declarat:
“I didn’t foul the black intentionally. I couldn’t believe I took so many attempts to hit the yellow. I walked back to my chair and I expected John to be able to pot the red. I was a bit confused as it was a bizarre situation.” (Ronnie O’Sullivan)
“Never in a million years did Ronnie foul deliberately, he is one of the most genuine people in snooker. It’s probably never happened to Jan (Verhaas) before and it will probably never happen to him again, it was just a freaky position on the table. He was just applying the rules but maybe it should be left to him to have discretion” (John Higgins)
In semifinala de vineri, Ding Junhui l-a invins pe Stephen Maguire cu 9-5, calificandu-se astfel in a doua finala consecutive. Si pentru ca si Ding da declaratii, iata ce a spus dupa meciul in care a realizat si cel mai mare break de pana acum al turneului (134p) :
“At 5-5 there was a lot of pressure on me but I was lucky in the next frame, he potted the red and the white went in off and left me an easy chance. I just had to keep my concentration and make a big break which gave me a lot of confidence. It’s crazy, I’ve never done this before been in two finals in a row but the next match will be very hard. They are both good.”
Estimez o finala destul de stransa; Ding este un mic robotel, iar John va fi si mai motivat sa castige dupa semifinala cu Ronnie. In plus, Ding poate castiga trofeul pentru a doua oara in cariera, iar John poate fi al treilea jucator dupa Hendry si Steve Davis care poate castiga Campionatul Mondial si UK Championship in acelasi an.