Ronnie O'Sullivan claims Judd Trump is ahead of the pack at the UK Championship

Ronnie O'Sullivan
Ronnie O'Sullivan

Ronnie O'Sullivan has claimed Judd Trump is 'ahead of the pack' as both players chase the UK Championship title in York.

Trump has got the better of O'Sullivan in three of the last four meetings between the pair, including in the final of the Northern Ireland Open earlier this month, and he currently heads the betting at 9/4 to win in York and ensure all three Triple Crown trophies are in his possession at the same time.

Trump's march to the top of the world rankings has suggested snooker is witnessing a genuine changing of the guard with Trump now established as the dominant force in the sport and the likes of O'Sullivan and John Higgins keen to play down any talk of a new 'rivalries' as they enter the twilight of their careers.

However, Trump's ascent to the top of snooker has come at the expense of O'Sullivan who now finds himself in the unusual position of not being the man to beat at the start of this prestigious event, something he was keen to emphasise after his first-round victory over Ross Bullman.

He said: "At the moment Judd seems to be ahead of the pack. He’s the world champion, he’s world number one and the man in form, so he’s going to take some stopping.

“But there are still so many games to go and sport’s a funny thing. It can take one small mistake and you’re on your way home, and there are a lot of good players left that want to get their hands on the trophy.

Despite fans and media alike trying to stoke up a rivalry between O'Sullivan and Trump in recent weeks, the seven-time UK Championship winner was keen to downplay such talk, instead insisting that his rivalries have been with the likes of Higgins and Mark Williams who, like O'Sullivan, hail from the famous Class of 92.

He went on: "It's very difficult to call it a rivalry because I'm so much older. I'm 44 and I think the rivalry was me, Higgins and Williams.

"I suppose Judd's rivalry would be with someone more like Ding, because they are at the right age. They're going along at parallel careers.

"I think rivalries are stemmed when two people are on parallel careers but it's good to still be around.

Nevertheless, O'Sullivan was keen to pay tribute to Trump for all he warned he still needs to achieve more before he can be labelled an all-time great of the game.

He added: "He's a great talent but you look at the CV; you look at Stephen Hendry and Steve Davis and you know they are true greats of the game.

"The true test is doing it over 10-15 years. You look at Messi, you look at Federer, you look at Tiger Woods and you would say they are greats."


  • Watch the World Championship LIVE on Eurosport and Eurosport Player with analysis from Jimmy White and Neal Foulds

Related links

Like what you've read?
Help your friends Know It All by sharing this article to your social media.

Most Read

Kilbricken Storm returns to the scene of his finest hour1

Value Bet: A Storm brewing

Our racing expert Ben Linfoot seeks out the best Value Bet selections for day one of Cheltenham's December meeting on Friday and he has three tips.

Arsenal celebrate a goal at Standard Liege2

Europa League: Arsenal fight back

A review of Thursday's action in the Europa League as Arsenal came from behind to draw 2-2 with Standard Liege while Man United won 4-0.

Check out the latest in-depth racing preview3

Friday's racing preview

Cogry looks to have a fine chance of repeating last year's victory at Cheltenham, according to Keith Hamer - he has a tip for every race on Friday.

Kilbricken Storm is backed to score4

Oli Bell: Friday's Best Bets

Oli Bell fancies former Festival hero Kilbricken Storm to come roaring back to form on his seasonal return at Cheltenham on Friday.

Ronnie O'Sullivan5

Rocket sets up Selby clash

A review of Thursday's action at the Scottish Open, where Ronnie O'Sullivan set up a last eight encounter with Mark Selby.

Most Read

Kilbricken Storm returns to the scene of his finest hour1

Value Bet: A Storm brewing

Our racing expert Ben Linfoot seeks out the best Value Bet selections for day one of Cheltenham's December meeting on Friday and he has three tips.

Arsenal celebrate a goal at Standard Liege2

Europa League: Arsenal fight back

A review of Thursday's action in the Europa League as Arsenal came from behind to draw 2-2 with Standard Liege while Man United won 4-0.

Check out the latest in-depth racing preview3

Friday's racing preview

Cogry looks to have a fine chance of repeating last year's victory at Cheltenham, according to Keith Hamer - he has a tip for every race on Friday.

Kilbricken Storm is backed to score4

Oli Bell: Friday's Best Bets

Oli Bell fancies former Festival hero Kilbricken Storm to come roaring back to form on his seasonal return at Cheltenham on Friday.

Ronnie O'Sullivan5

Rocket sets up Selby clash

A review of Thursday's action at the Scottish Open, where Ronnie O'Sullivan set up a last eight encounter with Mark Selby.

Racing Tips

Kilbricken Storm returns to the scene of his finest hour

Value Bet: A Storm brewing

Our racing expert Ben Linfoot seeks out the best Value Bet selections for day one of Cheltenham's December meeting on Friday and he has three tips.

Kilbricken Storm is backed to score

Oli Bell: Friday's Best Bets

Oli Bell fancies former Festival hero Kilbricken Storm to come roaring back to form on his seasonal return at Cheltenham on Friday.

Rock The Kasbah in action

Simon Holt: Rock on

Simon Holt has been in sizzling form with his big-race tips and has two more selections for Friday's action at Cheltenham.

Next Race Off

02:11 Delta Downs
6
(6)
Aloha Betty
J: Roberto Morales
5
(5)
No No No
J: Jansen Melancon
7
(7)
Condesa's Handmaid
J: Odilon Martinez

Football Tips

Sporting Life's Premier League preview package and free tips

Saturday's Premier League tips

Betting previews, Super 6 predictions & best bets for Saturday's action, including Liverpool, Chelsea and Leicester.

Our best bets for the latest round of Europa League fixtures

Europa League betting preview

It's the final set of group games and Paul Higham expects goals at Man Utd and Wolves, and even fancies backing Arsenal away.

Our best bets for the latest Sky Bet EFL action

Sky Bet EFL: Weekend preview

After getting a full house of winning tips in the Sky Bet EFL last weekend, Tom Carnduff is back with four best bets for the latest action.