Ronnie O’Sullivan has opened up about the mental challenges that he regularly battles on snooker’s biggest stage.
O’Sullivan is through to the second round at the World Championship after seeing off Mark Joyce 10-4 in his opener, but admitted he "ran out of ideas" during the match.
The Rocket said he found himself over-thinking during the encounter and tried to explain the whirring of his mind.
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“If I’m out there and things aren’t quite going right, I have to try and work out what it is that’s going wrong, how can I correct it,” he told Eurosport ahead of his second round meeting with Anthony McGill.
“Sometimes you try so many different things that in the end none of them work and you think ‘I’ve run out of ideas here’.
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“You just get a bit frustrated sometimes and start to question, ‘am I capable of getting through this game with what I’m producing?’
“It’s a bit of insecurity that creeps in. Sometimes you have to just do what I did last night (against Joyce) and block it out and refuse to allow those thoughts to come in. You just try and override it if you can.”
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O’Sullivan has lost all five finals he has featured in this season, but stressed he is not motivated solely by winning titles.
“My main aim isn’t to win as many tournaments, as many World Championships. It’s just to show up,” he continued.
“If I have two good weeks a year, four average weeks and three not so great weeks, I’m going to be in the top four-five come the end of the season. That’s enough for me. I enjoy it.
“For me it’s more about working with my sponsors, a lot of ambassadorial work, all the different things I have going on away from the table.”
O’Sullivan kicks off his meeting with McGill at 13:00 BST on Thursday.
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