Friday, 6 May, 2005
Ronnie O'Sullivan has thrashed Stephen Hendry 5-0 in the Premier League semi-finals - nine days after questioning his future in snooker.
O'Sullivan said he was planning to take a year out from the game following his defeat by Peter Ebdon in the World Championship quarter-finals.
And the world number one repeated his quit threat before his win over Hendry.
It was the first time Hendry had been whitewashed since he was blanked 9-0 by Marcus Campbell in 1998.
"That's the worst I've ever seen Stephen play," said O'Sullivan.
O'Sullivan must now beat Welshman Mark Williams in Saturday's final to win his fifth title of the season.
Williams beat Hong Kong's Marco Fu 5-0 in the other semi-final.
Ronnie O'Sullivan collected his fifth title of the season with a swift 6-0 whitewash of Mark Williams in the final of the Betfred.com Premier League on Saturday.
09 May 2005 01:40:00
The world No 1 waltzed to victory at the Manchester International Convention Centre in just 73 minutes, the second fastest ever win in a best-off-11 match.
O'Sullivan took the invitational Premier League title for the fourth time as he added to his haul of trophies in what has been one his most succcessful seasons. He had already won the totesport Grand Prix, Welsh Open, Rileys Club Masters and Failte Ireland Irish Masters.
Success in the event was some consolation to the 29-year-old from Chigwell following his 13-11 defeat to Peter Ebdon in the quarter-finals of the Embassy World Championship ten days earlier.
O'Sullivan, who beat Stephen Hendry 5-0 in the semi-finals on Friday, compiled runs of 75,71 and 134 in going 4-0 up on Welshman Williams, the latter earning him the tournament's high break prize.
He added the fifth frame with a 43 clearance after Williams had missed a tricky red then sealed the result with a smooth 95.
Ronnie O'Sullivan whitewashed Mark Williams 6-0 at the Manchester International Conference Centre to claim his fifth title of the season.
It took just 73 minutes for O'Sullivan to beat his Welsh rival win the final of the Betfred.com Premier League.
O'Sullivan warmed up for the clash with Williams by crushing Stephen Hendry 5-0 in the semi-finals on Friday.
In the final, he made a 134 total clearance to edge Marco Fu's 133 as the highest break of the event.
O'Sullivan, who has already won the Grand Prix, Welsh Open, Wembley Masters and Irish Masters, earned £50,000 for his win and tops the end-of-season money list with £380,250.
Williams, who won £25,000 as runner-up in Manchester, was second on the list with £281,800.
O'Sullivan was delighted with his victory and heaped praise on the groundbreaking competition, which introduced a unique 25 second shot-clock.
"This has been my favourite tournament of the year. The World Snooker Association could learn something from the way it's been run," said O'Sullivan.
"There have been no slow frames with people falling asleep."
The world number one lost 13-11 to Peter Ebdon in the quarter-finals of the Embassy World Championship at the Crucible 10 days ago, having fallen victim to his opponent's controversial go-slow tactics.
Williams is still waiting to lift his first trophy since the 2003 LG Cup.
"The first couple of frames could have gone either way but after that he just blew me away," said the Welshman.