Ronnie O’Sullivan admitted he was “trying really hard to not get down on himself” after reaching the final of the Tour Championship in thrilling fashion with a 10-7 victory against Gary Wilson.

World number 13 Wilson knocked out Mark Selby and Zhang Anda to reach the final four and he made a brilliant recovery in the first session, coming from 4-2 down to level it at 4-4.

An end-to-end tussle saw the score swing back and forth in the evening session, but O’Sullivan eventually pulled ahead, sealing victory with a century break and he admitted post-match that he was trying to “change his mindset” while playing.

“I’m just trying really hard to not get down on myself, it’s hard but I’m trying to sort of change my mindset,” he told ITV4.

“It’s not easy, maybe two weeks ago I’d have mentally thrown the towel in just because I wasn’t flowing but I just thought, ‘just keep going, keep going’ and just focus on some of the positives that might be round the corner.

O’Sullivan has been in conversations with psychiatrist Steve Peters and hopes to see his game “flow again”.

“(I’ve spoken with him) every day, three times a day, sometimes four times,” he said. “I’ve just got to commit to it now for a good year to try and get myself out of this sort of hole I’ve got myself in mentally with the obsession of the game, tinkering.

“I know I’m never going to stop tinkering, but I have to somehow get sort of my head strong enough to be able to deal with it and not go too deep into that horrible murky world that it is.

“Every sportsman – maybe golfers, tennis players, snooker players – I suppose we all do it, but I went so deep into that it’s like detoxing myself from it.

“It’s not going to happen straight away, so if I want to get out of it I’ve got to put a lot of hard work in.

“It kind of felt like I’ve had the yips in a way – mentally, physically – it feels like you get scared to even want to go and play.

“That’s not a nice place to be, so I’ve got nothing left to do other than to try and get myself mentally out of it and hopefully my game will start to flow again, maybe.”

Wilson had the advantage in the opening frames, posting 73 and 62 before O’Sullivan began to take a grip on the match.

He hit 102 in the third frame and the momentum was firmly with him as he took the following three frames – hitting 110 in the fifth – to take the lead.

However, Wilson clawed his way back into the game with 83 and 84 to level going into the evening session.

O’Sullivan experienced a chalk hit in the first frame of the evening session, allowing Wilson to swoop back in and take the frame, but O’Sullivan quickly levelled in the following frame and took the next two to lead 7-5.

An end-to-end tussle saw Wilson charge straight out of the blocks after the interval in spectacular style, taking back-to-back frames with a huge 135 followed by 96 in just 24 minutes.

However, O’Sullivan made another comeback, scoring 77 and 98 before securing his spot in the final in style with a 129 clearance.

He will meet either Mark Williams or Mark Allen in Sunday’s final, with their semi-final taking place on Saturday.

Ronnie O’Sullivan demolished Ali Carter 10-2 to win what had been termed a grudge match and reach the semi-finals of the Tour Championship.

The pair had not met since their ill-tempered meeting at the Masters final in January, which O’Sullivan won 10-7.

Carter accused O’Sullivan of “snotting all over the floor” and The Rocket responded by saying his opponent was “not a nice person” during an expletive-laden rant.

O’Sullivan refused to speak about Carter in his pre-game interview, letting his snooker do the talking in a one-sided contest in Manchester that was over within an hour of the mid-match break.

Carter never settled after missing an easy red in the opening frame which O’Sullivan punished by making a 77 break.

A scrappy 28-minute frame followed and O’Sullivan went to the interval 4-0 ahead after compiling breaks of 87 and 54.

Carter’s best in the first session was a meagre 13 and his senses seemed scrambled when he attempted to swerve around the yellow and struck one of two reds left on the table.

O’Sullivan capitalised with a frame-winning 51 and extended his advantage to 7-0 with breaks of 81 and 92 – those efforts taking a total 14 minutes.

Carter headed into the final frame of the afternoon session with the grim prospect of being whitewashed.

But he responded in superb fashion with a 141 clearance to eclipse Tom Ford’s 138 as the highest break of the tournament, placing him in prime position for a £10,000 bonus.

Carter closed out O’Sullivan again at the start of the evening session, with breaks of 36 and 70 reducing the deficit to 7-2.

It was a false dawn, however, as Carter ran out of position and missed a red for O’Sullivan to make a 62 clearance.

O’Sullivan then cashed in with a decisive 52 break after another Carter error had opened up the table.

Carter was put of his misery in the 12th frame as O’Sullivan compiled 67 before going in-off in the middle pocket, a rare mistake in a snooker masterclass.

Zhang Anda and Gary Wilson will resume their quarter-final on Thursday level at 4-4, with the winner meeting O’Sullivan in the last four.

Wilson won two frames on the black to lead 3-1 before Zhang fought back strongly in an even contest.

Mark Selby produced a vintage display to sweep past Ronnie O’Sullivan 6-0 and secure his place in the semi-finals of the Players Championship in Telford.

World number one O’Sullivan had looked pretty much untouchable this season, with four major ranking titles already.

However, it was Selby, himself a four-time world champion, who produced a high-quality display with half-century breaks or higher in five frames to end O’Sullivan’s 16-match unbeaten run.

There had been a controversial start to the match in the opening frame when referee Desislava Bozhilova failed to warn O’Sullivan after a second missed attempt when he could see one side of a red.

She swiftly realised her error, apologised to both players and promptly informed the world number one he would forfeit the frame if he did not hit a red with his next shot.

O’Sullivan’s response was to smash into the reds, opening up the table which allowed Selby to eventually clinch the frame with a break of 65.

Selby, who will play either China’s Zhang Anda or John Higgins in the semi-finals, soon built early momentum following a clearance of 91. After O’Sullivan did not make the most of a chance in the third, another break of 81 further extended his advantage.

It was turning into a vintage display from the Jester from Leicester, who produced another fine break of 105 to go into the mid-session interval in complete control at 4-0.

Following the resumption, O’Sullivan continued to make some wayward shots, going in off a red and into the top pocket as Selby went on to take the fifth frame with a 59 clearance.

The Rocket finally kicked into gear in the next frame with a break of 58, only to run out of position and then see an attempted safety shot back up the table edge the green to leave a red on.

Following couple of tense exchanges, Selby sunk a long red at pace into the bottom left corner and then dropped in a deft final red after O’Sullivan had left it just over the pocket before clearing the colours to take the frame 70-58, completing a memorable win.

During Thursday’s afternoon session at the International Centre, Northern Ireland’s Mark Allen came through a marathon four-hour contest to beat Gary Wilson 6-4.

Allen, celebrating his 38th birthday, moved into an early 2-0 lead after two half-century breaks and went into the interval 3-1 ahead with a run of 75.

Wilson, who won the BetVictor Welsh Open on Sunday, then mounted a recovery as he fought back to level at 3-3 on the back of a 76 break.

World number three Allen, though, dug in again to take frames seven and eight, before missing a match-ball chance in the next and then eventually getting the job done with a 69 break.

Allen, who had beaten former world champion Mark Williams in the first round, goes on to play Ali Carter for a place in Sunday’s final.

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