Ronnie O'Sullivan hails Alexander Ursenbacher after shock UK Championship loss

Ronnie O’Sullivan suffered a shock 6-5 defeat to Alexander Ursenbacher in the second round of the UK Championship on Sunday afternoon in Milton Keynes.

The seven-time UK champ was the runaway favourite to beat the world number 66, but just as happened in their only previous meeting, the Swiss star came out on top.

The 24-year-old downed the Rocket at the 2019 Welsh Open and has kept up his 100% record against the world champion with another fine victory.

It was a strange game with no centuries from either man, Ursenbacher managing a break of 67, while O’Sullivan made a 68 and a 51.

The world champion was a long way from his best as he missed a lot of balls and the ultra-attacking Swiss took advantage by taking on almost everything available to him.

After being 2-0 and 3-1 behind, O’Sullivan fought back to lead 5-4 thanks to three frames on the spin.

However, the man from Rheinfelden pinched the last two to progress into the last 32.

‘I thought I’ve done well to get five frames, I think the scoreline flattered me a bit,’ O’Sullivan told Eurosport.

‘He played the better snooker and played the better snooker when it mattered, that’s the way it goes.

‘I’m not making no excuses, he played well, deserved his victory.’

On Ursenbacher’s ultra-aggressive style, the Rocket said: ‘I thought he was quite conservative today, normally he goes for even more!

‘He swings, mate, if he was a boxer you’d have to be ducking all the time, they’re like bombs. He can play.

‘There was no way I should have got five frames, he had so many chances to put me away and he didn’t. He was much the better player.’

Ursenbacher will now face either Jordan Brown or Jamie Jones in the next stage as he continues his finest run in the tournament.

‘My game plan was just play, play my practice game, that’s when you’ve got your best chance to win,’ said the Swiss.

‘I knew I was up against the greatest player to ever pick up a cue so there’s no point putting myself under pressure or thinking about things I didn’t need to think about.’

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