Ronnie O'Sullivan goes deep on his personality: 'I wish I wasn't like that'
Ronnie O’Sullivan has always done things his own way, which he says is down to a natural aversion to authority, dating back as long as he can remember.
The Rocket may have mellowed in recent years, enjoying a quieter life away from the snooker table than he used to, but he says his natural rebellious streak remains, and will always be there.
The five-time world champion’s relationship with WST chairman Barry Hearn over the years is illustrative of his disdain for authority, regularly falling out with snooker’s head honcho.
O’Sullivan was even threatening to walk away from the main tour and set up his own snooker tour with other top players a couple of years ago, although that talk has gone quiet since.
The 44-year-old says he has just never been able to accept orders, something he wishes was different in his make-up, but has always been the case.
‘A bit of a rebel, I suppose,’ Ronnie said on Instagram of his main personality trait. ‘I don’t mean to be a rebel and I sometimes think, why am I not a conformist?
‘But I was like this when I was at school, even when I was 10, 11. I just wouldn’t listen to anybody.
‘If somebody told me I had to do something, I was like, “nah, mate.” I just didn’t have it in me to do it.
‘A lot of people say I’m an attention-seeker, but I’m not, I just don’t like being told what to do.
‘The minute someone tells me what to do, I’m like, “f**k you!”
‘I just can’t deal with it. I wish I wasn’t like that, but that’s just how I am.’
Hearn, who has labelled O’Sullivan’s rebellious streak ‘deadly dull’ in the past, has also admitted that it is a part of his psyche that comes with being a genius on the snooker table.
‘This might sound strange,’ Hearn told Metro.co.uk in April. ‘Ronnie O’Sullivan is a lovely, lovely person, he’s also a genius, and therein lies the problem.
‘A genius is not normal, they don’t say normal things and they don’t act normally, that’s one of the reasons they are a genius and we have to allow for that.
‘Ronnie comes out with some outrageous things and I allow for it, in the same way that I allowed for Alex Higgins because he was a genius, Jimmy White, genius, Phil Taylor, I don’t expect normality from geniuses.
‘The sad thing, for me, is sometimes the errant ideology of a genius is counterproductive to their own personal welfare.
‘For Ronnie O’Sullivan, I love him, I’ve known him since he was 12-years-old, I’ve been his manger twice, we disagree of lots of things fundamentally because he’s got too much time on his hands and he likes a column inch so he comes up with outlandish statements, most of which are rubbish.’
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