O’Sullivan shocked by world number 66

Ronnie O’Sullivan is a record seven-time UK champion
Dates: 23 November to 6 December Venue: Marshall Arena, Milton Keynes
Coverage: Watch live on BBC TV, BBC iPlayer, BBC Red Button, BBC Sport website and BBC Sport app from Saturday, 28 November.

World champion Ronnie O’Sullivan suffered a shock 6-5 defeat by world number 66 Alexander Ursenbacher in the second round of the UK Championship.

O’Sullivan looked out of sorts for much of the contest and was beaten in a final-frame decider.

Switzerland’s Ursenbacher started brightly and opened up a 3-1 advantage, but O’Sullivan hit back for 4-4.

The Englishman went in front for the first time, but Ursenbacher took back-to-back frames for a famous victory.

‘Embarrassed’ O’Sullivan offers no excuses

O’Sullivan came into Sunday’s match after seeing defending champion Ding Junhui and Northern Ireland’s Mark Allen suffer surprise second-round losses the previous day.

But an error-strewn performance b y the 44-year-old, who had a high break of 68, meant another big name went out early in Milton Keynes.

O’Sullivan, who lost in the Northern Ireland Open final to Judd Trump last Sunday, told BBC Sport: “He played well and deserved his victory. It would have been robbery if I had won; he would have been really devastated. I had no right to be in that game and missed far too many balls.

“I am not going to make excuses – the guy played well and good luck to the fella. Hopefully he can go on and win a few more matches.

“I wasn’t that frustrated, I just could not pot any balls. I felt embarrassed and could not put anything together. To get it to 5-4, I was thinking: ‘If can get over the line I have stolen it.’

“You only win matches if you deserve to. I deserved to lose.”

Ursenbacher, 24, has reached just one semi-final during his career, at the English Open in 2017, and picked up another win over O’Sullivan after beating him at the Welsh Open last year.

Afterwards, he said he was “a bit relieved”, adding: “I know I am capable of beating him and he did not really turn up today, it made it a bit easier but I am still proud to win.

“I was fancying it at 5-5 all day long. I wanted to play Ronnie in a big event and that would be a big test for me. I was full of confidence.”

More to follow.

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