Ronnie O’Sullivan in bizarre interview as he dons glasses and makes Schwarzenegger vow

Laila Rouass responds to question about Ronnie O'Sullivan split

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Ronnie O’Sullivan marked his first round victory at the World Snooker Championship in the usual way – showing off his new music-playing glasses and talking about actor-turned-politician Arnold Schwarzenegger. The bizarre post-match interview came after his victory over David Gilbert at the Crucible Theatre.

The Rocket recovered from an early setback to cruise to victory as he began his quest to become snooker world champion for the seventh time. The 46-year-old, who became world number one again in the lead up to this tournament, lost the first three frames but came back to win 10-5.

He was clearly in good spirits as he faced the cameras for his post match interview, and treated viewers to a glimpse of his new glasses. He pulled them out to BBC match interviewer Rob Walker, who was also wearing lenses, before declaring: “These are actually headphones. They’re not glasses. Yours are glasses, mine are not because I can’t see.”

More bizarrely, the Chigwell potter started to talk about his plans to start pumpin iron as he switches up the way he keeps himself fit. And he couldn’t resist making a reference to retired strongman Schwarzenegger, who became famous for his bulging biceps as well as his long-running Hollywood career. 

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“I’m trying to change my gym work, instead of running so much, do some weights to strengthen my bones up and my body,” O’Sullivan said. “I look at a lot of 50-year-olds they look a bit old and fragile. I was speaking to Barry McGuigan who said as you get older, maybe the weights are the way forward. If I intend to play that long I need to look at how I train, instead of running, I need to start looking a bit like Arnie.”

Ronnie also used the interview as an opportunity to address comments made about him by Hossein Vafaei. The Iranian snooker star had slammed the six-time world champion by claiming he is “disrespectful” and “not good for the game”. O’Sullivan responded by name-checking his accuser in an answer to a question about the records he could break at this year’s world championship.

“You should know now I’m not really bothered about records and such like that,” he said. “Everyone talking about the seventh, Hendry’s record, but he was a hero of mine, I’d actually quite like him to keep one of them records. I’ve got enough records. I won’t start going on about them or Hossein Vafaei might get the hump. I’ll stay humble and say I’m here to enjoy my snooker, have some fun and enjoy the ride.

“I look at a lot of 50-year-olds they look a bit old and fragile. I was speaking to Barry McGuigan who said as you get older, maybe the weights are the way forward.

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Meanwhile, Ronnie might find himself in hot water with snooker officials after being caught on camera making an offensive gesture after missing a shot. It happend in the 13th frame, as he reacted angrily to missing a simple shot by rattling the black in the jaws of the corner pocket.

The gesture was broadcast on live TV and spotted by fellow snooker pro Matt Selt, who was watching the action from home. “What an ambassador,” Selt wrote sarcastically as he posted the clip on his Instagram page – clearly unimpressed with O’Sullivan’s actions.

Based on previous instances, Ronnie may face punishment for the gesture. In 2008 he was fined £2,750 and docked 700 ranking points for making obscene gestures and comments in a China Open press conference. And in 2013 at the Crucible referee Michaela Tabb warned O’Sullivan for another gesture in a semi-final against Judd Trump.

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