Snooker

'It Smells Of Piss' - Ronnie O'Sullivan Rages Against English Open Venue

'It Smells Of Piss' - Ronnie O'Sullivan Rages Against English Open Venue

Participating in the English Open this week, snooker player Ronnie O'Sullivan has had some scathing remarks for a venue he has described as "a bit of a hellhole."

Speaking to the BBC after his 4-1 defeat of Kurt Maflin in the opening round of the event, the five-time World Champion painted an unpleasant picture of the K2 Leisure Centre in Crawley.

"It's such a bad venue, it demotivates you to want to play. This is about as bad as I've ever seen. It's a bit of a hellhole."

A relatively new tournament on the snooker calendar, the English Open was first played in 2016. Now in its third outing, Ronnie O'Sullivan returns as the reigning champion.

However, it is not clear how much longer he fancies knocking around an arena that scarcely seems up to scratch.

"I don't know what this gaff is but I've just done an interview and all I can smell is urine.

"It's just got no atmosphere in there. I'm practising and I've got wires all around the table. There's no security, you've got people running at you left, right and centre.

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Incredibly, O'Sullivan then went on to accuse the governing body of the sport, World Snooker, of cutting corners in their preparation for the event.

"It's not the fans' fault. They [World Snooker] obviously haven't got the budget to run it properly.

"I don't know where their budget is but they're cutting corners. I think they should invest in good venues. Players deserve better."

An allegation that is sure not to go down too well with chairman Barry Hearn, a response to O'Sullivan's complaints will surely be forthcoming.

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Arthur James O'Dea

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