O’Sullivan, who has battled depression and once checked into The Priory to rehabilitate after alcohol and drug problems, is now expected to slip back into semi-retirement. The demands of modern-day snooker, which is looking to expand globally, particularly in the hotbed of China, require too much traveling and dedication for O’Sullivan, a father of three.
“I want to balance it [snooker] with other stuff,” said O’Sullivan, who has been helped by the work of renowned sports psychologist Steve Peters for his last two world titles. “I realize that in the year out, I didn’t miss snooker. I just missed having something to do.”
“If I can balance it with other things, that’s the way forward. You feel trapped sometimes when it’s just snooker, snooker, snooker. I’m not good at dealing with all the emotions that come with it,” O’Sullivan said.
However, he has threatened to quit the game numerous times and has shown he struggles to stay away from it.
So there are reasons for fans to be hopeful he will be back in Sheffield next May.