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Ronnie O'Sullivan v Tom Ford: Welsh Open 2017 preview - Rocket launches bid for a record fifth title

Ronnie O'Sullivan is aiming for a record-breaking fifth Welsh Open crown (credit:Credit by bettingpro)

Ronnie O’Sullivan launches the defence of his Welsh Open crown when he locks horns with Tom Ford in the opening round at the Motorpoint Arena in Cardiff on Tuesday.

Watch and bet on O'Sullivan vs Ford live at Bet365 > Sports > Live streaming Snooker


The Rocket, who recovered from 5-2 down by reeling off seven frames on the spin for a 9-5 victory over Neil Robertson in last year’s final, is seeking a fifth title in Wales, which would make him the most successful player in the tournament’s history outright.

O’Sullivan was at the centre of controversy once again at the World Grand Prix in Preston last week, following his decision to give a robotic interview as a protest after it was revealed that he was being investigated by World Snooker for comments made during his record-breaking seventh Masters success earlier this year.

The 41-year-old was beaten by an inspired Neil Robertson in the Last 16 at the Guild Hall, but will be looking to let his snooker do the talking in the Welsh capital this week.

Despite that victory at the Masters, O’Sullivan is still searching for his first ranking success of the season, having fallen in the final of the European Masters and UK Championship, and going all the way here would secure the 29th title of an illustrious career.

Standing in the way of the Rocket at the opening hurdle is world number 35 Ford, who is in decent form after making a 147 on the way to reaching the German Masters quarter-finals at the start of the month.

The Leicester cueist also gave Judd Trump a good run for his money in the first round of the World Grand Prix, before eventually succumbing 4-2 against the world number four.

However, Ford has not enjoyed the best of fortunes in this event – failing to progress beyond the second round since reaching the Last 16 in 2013 for a second straight year.

Therefore, the Paul Hunter Classic finalist will be eager to put an end to that barren run, and claiming a scalp in O’Sullivan would be just the start.

The match gets underway from 1pm GMT and will be contested over the best of seven frames at the Motorpoint Arena in Cardiff.

Multiple ranking event semi-finalist Mark Davis awaits the winner in Round Two on Wednesday.

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Ronnie O'Sullivan v Tom Ford: Welsh Open 2017 preview - Rocket launches bid for a record fifth title

Ronnie O’Sullivan launches the defence of his Welsh Open crown when he locks horns with Tom Ford in the opening round at the Motorpoint Arena in Cardiff on Tuesday.

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