Crucible pariah admonished over THAT rant as O'Sullivan goes all coy – World Snooker Championship bulletin

Hossein Vafaei of Iran reacts in the first round match against Judd Trump of England on day two of 2024 Cazoo World Snooker Championship at Crucible Theatre on April 21, 2024 in Sheffield, England. (Photo by Tai Chengzhe/VCG via Getty Images)
Hossein Vafaei of Iran reacts in the first round match against Judd Trump -Credit:Tai Chengzhe

Former Snooker world champion Neil Robertson has leapt to the defence of Crucible sniper Hossein Vafaei amid a barrage of criticism.

The Iranian let rip about the Sheffield venue with his comments over the smell and the size of the practice tables drawing criticism from the likes of Jimmy White – with the six-time finalist branding the comments "pathetic". But the Iranian has earned a vocal backing from Robertson who reckons the comments have been blown out of proportion.

Robertson, posting on X, said: “Some of the comments towards what Hossein Vafaei said regarding the Crucible, which are all true (maybe not the smell part), is really disappointing. We’ve seen far worse comments from British based players about the same venue and others that were laughed off or swept under the carpet by those who put their boot into him. This is a guy [by the way] who I’ve seen play matches with no sleep for 30 hours because he’s had to travel through multiple different countries just to get a visa in time. He has it the hardest on tour by a mile.”

Meanwhile, Ronnie O'Sullivan has played down his status as the GOAT — and stressed getting to the top is not all it’s cracked up to be. The Rocket is bidding for a record eighth world title to eclipse Stephen Hendry’s haul of seven. But the world No.1, who plays qualifier Jackson Page on Wednesday, said: “I don’t really consider myself the greatest of all time.

“I’m one of them, maybe. You’ve got Hendry, (Steve) Davis, and my hat’s in the ring with them. I’ve had a different career to them. I think they just did it over a 10-year period, whereas I’ve sort of gone off track for five or six years then got myself together again and back off track for a few years then got myself back together.”