Ronnie O’Sullivan did not sit on the fence when quizzed on Mark Selby’s tactics during the 19th frame of the World Snooker Championship final against Shaun Murphy.
Murphy produced a brilliant shot where he left the cue ball sat behind the brown and Selby was snookered.
After three misses on the extended ‘spider’ and ‘swan’ rests, Selby was able to use a normal rest to get out of trouble.
O’Sullivan analysed the move for Eurosport and he could not believe that Murphy did not challenge the re-spot.
“If the white was put back where it was originally, this shot is just not possible,” O’Sullivan told Eurosport. “Because you can’t hit enough of the white, and if you did, you would probably miscue and the white would go towards the yellow.
“So if this shot was playable in the first place, he would have done. But even still, even when the white has moved [from the re-spot] quite considerably, really, he still couldn’t hit enough of the white to come that side of the red.
“So that shot was just never possible. You try not to blame the players, but in that situation, if the player has got the spider out originally and then he is using the rest, surely they should be able to use the technology to see the balls are not right.
“Because if they were right, you [Selby] would still have the spider in your hands. So maybe they should have used the technology to get it right.
“Personally, if I was playing and I was Shaun, I would have been out of my chair and I would have asked to see a freeze frame to say that shot was not on in the first place.
“That’s what I would have done, but Shaun obviously did not choose to excercise that option.
“You have to blame Shaun in that situation. Selby is maybe just trying to gain a little advantage, and unless he is pulled up on it, maybe he is going to try and take that advantage.
“I know straight away, when you are cueing over with that spider, that’s the worst shot in snooker. The first two shots, he would probably do that [scuff it for a miss] 100 times out of 100.
“So if he is getting the rest out, why didn’t he do that in the first place? Now I’m thinking that the balls must be in the wrong position.
“Let’s get it right, because that ain’t right. To me, the first decision would always be the rest over the spider [before the re-spot], no question about that.”
Fellow Eurosport expert Neal Foulds added: “Listen, you don’t want to get too involved in blaming players, but the balls were not put back correctly, we know that because we saw how they were put back and it was not correct, so the referee, the marker and the player at the table really have the responsibility.
“Murphy didn’t leave his chair; he will always take it on trust from the other player, but I’m a little surprised that happened the way it did because the shot was not on that he ended up playing.”