The financial rewards of a breakaway snooker tour appeal to Ronnie O’Sullivan

Ronnie O’Sullivan joked that he would “love to see” a LIV Golf-style breakaway in snooker if someone was willing to offer him hundreds of millions of pounds, but was not interested in contributing to the noise around what a possible rival could mean for the World Snooker Tour.

Leading players, including O’Sullivan, are understood to have been approached by Far East backers about the prospect of establishing a breakaway circuit from as early as next season.

O’Sullivan has already effectively ruled himself out of any parallel tour by signing a deal to play in WST events in Saudi Arabia for the next three years.

But he said if something on the scale of LIV – which has lured some of the world’s best golfers away from the established tours – came along in snooker, he would be more than happy to take the phone call.

O’Sullivan, who is looking forward to a World Championship quarter-final clash with Stuart Bingham after overcoming Ryan Day in the second round, said: “I would love to see a LIV-style breakaway, gosh!

“I wouldn’t mind getting a phone call saying ‘here, do you want 600 million to play for three years?’.

“I’d love that phone call, wouldn’t you?”

Although the WST recently relaxed its rules allowing contracted players to appear in other events provided they do not clash with its own, the scale of the prospective Far East tour makes committing to both impossible.

When asked for his opinion on whether any players who leave to join a rival tour should be allowed to play on the WST, the 48-year-old said: “I don’t know. I don’t get involved in it.

“Each to their own. Everyone’s got to do what they’ve got to do. I try not to get involved in it.

“I know what I want from the sport and I know what I’m prepared to do. What I need in return from it.

“And as long as I keep getting that then I don’t mind playing. But everyone needs to make that up for themselves.

“We all have different positions in the game, different stages of careers. Working more might work for some people, working less might.

“It’s not just always about money. The most important thing is our time. For some people it’s money. It’s whatever really.”


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