McManus on working with O’Sullivan: ‘I’m lucky I get to see that side of things’


Ronnie O’Sullivan (Picture: Getty Images)

Alan McManus has the pleasure of working with Ronnie O’Sullivan in their roles as television pundits, and while the Scot knows when to ‘back off and not engage’ he says he is lucky to see the Rocket hugely passionate about the game he loves.

McManus and O’Sullivan were colleagues in the Eurosport studio at the Northern Ireland Open in Belfast earlier this month after the Rocket was beaten by Yan Bingtao in the last 16.

Earlier in the tournament O’Sullivan had criticised the atmosphere at the Waterfront Hall in Belfast, saying he was ‘very bored’ and he ‘wasn’t really bothered he he won or lost,’ after beating Andy Hicks in round two.

Angles says that when the six-time world champion is in that kind of mood, he chooses to just leave him to it, although he then gets to see the other side of O’Sullivan later in the event.

The Rocket went from downbeat to quite perky after he was eliminated from the tournament and McManus had a great experience with him as they watched the climax of the event.

McManus told the Talking Snooker podcast: ‘Sometimes, I think if he’s in that sort of mood and he doesn’t want to engage in a positive way about the snooker or whatever he’s talking about, I just think, “I’ll back off and not engage with him.”

‘If he doesn’t want to talk about it he’s not gonna.

‘The flip side of that, of course, is when he’s really up for it. I’ll say this…later in the week, Ronnie had lost, so he had a couple of days in the studio.

‘We were watching the matches and he’s into it, he loves it. John [Higgins] was doing some special things and he was loving it, he loves the game.

‘I’m lucky I get to see that side of things and he really loves it.’

McManus also enjoyed O’Sullivan’s humble side, surprised to see the 37-time ranking event winner asking how players pulled off shots that surely he could also manage.

‘We sit and have a laugh when somebody plays a good shot. It’s actually ridiculous because he’s rolling about laughing after a good shot, going: “How did he do that?”

World Snooker Championship - Day 14

Alan McManus (Picture: Getty Images)

‘But you think, well…oh, it doesn’t matter Ronnie. But he’s a snooker fan. He’s engaging, he can be a bit up and down, but who can’t in other ways?

‘Ronnie chooses to be a bit up and down in press things or on camera or whatever but at the end of the day he’s a big snooker fan and he loves it, and why not? He’s quite good.

‘He’s a good guy, he’s alright, you know. I really like him.’

MORE : Ronnie O’Sullivan claims nine-ball pool is his ‘little secret’ to snooker success

MORE : Alan McManus names his top six snooker players of all time: ‘As far as the greatest, obviously Ronnie is’

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