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Rugged Ronnie O’Sullivan swaps snooker waistcoat for running vest as he competes in cross country race

RONNIE O’SULLIVAN was snapped competing in a cross country race on Sunday for his local running club. Fans are used to seeing the six-time world snooker world champion in his tailored shirt, waistcoat and bow tie. But rugged Ronnie sported a green and white running vest as he strutted his stuff in a Metropolitan Cross […] ...

RONNIE O’SULLIVAN was snapped competing in a cross country race on Sunday for his local running club.

Fans are used to seeing the six-time world snooker world champion in his tailored shirt, waistcoat and bow tie.

Twitter @WoodfordGreenAC

Ronnie O’Sullivan swapped snooker for athletics when he ran a cross country event for Woodford Green AC[/caption]

PA

The snooker legend won his sixth World Championship last year, beating Kyren Wilson 18-8[/caption]

But rugged Ronnie sported a green and white running vest as he strutted his stuff in a Metropolitan Cross Country League race in Welwyn Garden City.

The league is made up of 23 athletic and running clubs from in and around London and O’Sullivan, competing for Woodford Green AC, finished an impressive 253rd out of 1,830 entries.

The Rocket rediscovered his love for running during the lockdown last year and said he has lost nearly two stone since getting active.

O’Sullivan told SunSport last year: “I am training myself again so that at some point I can run a good half-marathon. Maybe even go out to Iten in Kenya. Really go for it.

“I was 14st 7lb before lockdown and I am now about 12 st 10lb. So nearly two stone.

“Everyone says to me ‘you have lost weight’. The scales have stayed the same for the last two months but my body shape is changing – I am looking like Mo Farah now!”

But the former snooker world number one appears to be taking the hobby more seriously now by running at competitive club level.


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O’Sullivan previously revealed he had suffered from a series of knee problems over the years, but now seems to be injury-free and in excellent shape.

He said: “I am getting there. It is taken a while. I hadn’t really run for 10 years. I am running now instead of jogging.

“The knees are okay. I thought I might have arthritis but a medic said I haven’t, which is good. Probably just tight muscles.

“You need to condition them over a period of time so they can take it. At the moment my body isn’t strong enough. That comes with bagging good weeks of training.

“My body will soon get stronger to absorb the punishment I am putting it through.”

O’Sullivan has now gone 15 months without a major snooker title, which world number two Judd Trump claims is because he has lost his fear factor.

Trump said: “I just think he’s lost a little bit of the belief. When you don’t win you don’t have the belief and people aren’t scared to beat you.

“No one’s that scared to play him, anyone’s game is good enough to beat him on their day, that’s what’s happened over the last year.”

The Rocket will seek to end his drought and win a record fourth title at the Champion of Champions and a £150,000 top prize in Bolton this week.

Alan Walter – The Times

O’Sullivan has been a keen runner for a number of years and was snapped out for a jog here in 2011[/caption]

Getty

O’Sullivan was beaten Trump (9-7) in the Northern Ireland Open final last year for the third year running[/caption]

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