Ronnie O’Sullivan has urged Mark Selby to embrace the battle or take a step back and look to enjoy his snooker.
Selby was thrashed by Barry Hawkins in the quarter-finals of the Masters, and he said the following day that he will seek help for mental health problems.
“Just want to apologise to all my friends and family for letting them down,” Selby wrote on Twitter. “Mentally not in a good place at moment, had a relapse and trying to bottle it up and put a brave face on is not the way.
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“I promise I will get help and become a better person.”
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Selby has built a career on his gritty play and desire to improve his game.
He won the World Championship last year, but is struggling mentally.
O’Sullivan has fought his own demons during his career, but has found a balance by being less focused on success.
Six-time world champion O’Sullivan has said Selby has a choice to make: either continue the battle or adopt a carefree approach.
“It can be tough,” O’Sullivan said on Eurosport. "But you have to make a decision whether you are going to rule it, or it rules you.
"There are two camps to be in. I chose to go the other way and be a bit more carefree, and treat it like a bit of fun.
If you are going to get involved in the mustard, you have got to take on all that comes with it.
Selby has never been shy in asking other players for advice, which O’Sullivan feels is not normal.
“I know Mark speaks to a lot of players about if they can give him advice on his game,” O’Sullivan said. “It’s unusual that a player would do that.
“Would [Rafael] Nadal ring up [Roge] Federer and ask for help on his backhand?
“He is open about it.
“It is a tough sport, mentally it is tough.
“You have just got to get in and take the battle scars. If you want to be a top player, world champion, winning tournaments like he does, you have to put yourself through the mill. Or you take a step back and lower the intensity, enjoy it and not win as much.
“You have to choose one or the other.”
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