Ronnie O'Sullivan is setting the standard for other snooker players to follow both on and off the table, according to his fellow six-time world champion Steve Davis.
O'Sullivan has been in glorious form at the Crucible Theatre as he chases a record-equalling seventh world title.
After completing a 10-5 win over David Gilbert from 3-0 behind in the first round a week ago, the record 38-time ranking event winner enjoyed a thumping 13-4 victory over former Masters holder Mark Allen in the last 16 on Saturday.
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O'Sullivan has hit five century breaks and 13 breaks over 50 in setting up a quarter-final with Stephen Maguire on Tuesday and Wednesday.
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Davis feels players like Allen should study O'Sullivan's work ethic to better themselves with John Higgins shedding several stones in the gym since losing 13-7 to Mark Williams at the Crucible last year.
"I think you have to pay the price more than you would ever think to win the World Championship," said Davis, world champion in 1981, 1983, 1984, 1987, 1988 and 1989.
I would make the case that Mark Allen maybe has to pay the price more. I'd love to see him be paying the price on and off the table because I think he could be capable of so much more.
"John Higgins has gone back in the gym. He looks a far leaner, fitter and more mentally assured animal.
"You know full well Ronnie pays the price.
"He's not doing it just because he likes running or just for his health. He's doing it because he also knows it is going to keep him in the game for longer.
"They are the yardstick. Every player needs to pay that price on and off the table."
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Davis feels O'Sullivan will be happy within himself in Sheffield because he is leaving no stone unturned in his bid to lift the trophy.
At the age of 46, O'Sullivan is working harder than ever to compete with younger players, but Davis feels that will also give him a great mental boost.
"If you know in your mind that you have a weakness and you don't work on it, you come to the table and there is guilt," commented the Romford icon on the BBC.
"There is a bailing out. You have to go into the tournament thinking: 'I've covered every base and can't do any more.'
"There are players that do that and there are players who maybe don't. Who don't practise enough, who maybe don't pay the price in the gym.
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Whatever it is, the margins of error at the top of the game..everyone is getting closer to what is humanly achievable so you have to look at every margin.
"Diet..the psychological part of the game. Everything has got to be attuned now to the best possible outcome.
"If you don't, you can get away it, but you are not giving your talent the justice it deserves."
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