Ronnie O'Sullivan: When The Rocket produced 5 of the greatest minutes of snooker in 1997

Ronnie O'Sullivan's 147 in 1997

Over the past couple of days, Ronnie O’Sullivan produced yet another clinical performance in order to snatch his seventh world title and truly stake his claim as the greatest snooker player to ever grace the sport.

Needless to say, the Rocket is ageing like fine wine.

He has shown no signs in slowing down as he moves ever closer to overtaking Stephen Hendry’s record for the most world championship wins- a record that he tied yesterday evening.

After composing himself to snatch the final frame in yesterday’s intense battle with Judd Trump, Ronnie became the oldest world champion ever, eclipsing Ray Reardon who won a world championship aged 45.

Before lifting the trophy, Ronnie announced that there was still life in this old dog, announcing that snooker fans would be treated to yet another year of O’Sullivan magic.

“I like to win, but it’s not the be-all and end-all. The Crucible brings out the worst in me. It’s probably not the best idea but we’ll probably go again next year.”

Ronnie O'Sullivan hold his word title aloft
SHEFFIELD, ENGLAND – MAY 02: Ronnie O’Sullivan of England poses with the Betfred World Snooker Championship trophy after winning the Betfred World Snooker Championship Final match between Judd Trump of England and Ronnie O’Sullivan of England during Day Seventeen of the Betfred World Snooker Championship at Crucible Theatre on May 02, 2022 in Sheffield, England. (Photo by Lewis Storey/Getty Images)

After a fortnight of Ronnie brilliance, it seems fitting to harp back to arguably Ronnie’s most impressive achievement.

A bold statement considering the man has dominated every facet of the sport for 30-years, but making the quickest 147 break in history, in a record five minutes and eight seconds, is something that anyone will struggle to replicate.

He is called the “Rocket” for good reason. His ability to score rapidly has always left his opponents scratching their heads in bewilderment; but this particular break in 1997 was almost unthinkable to any snooker fan.

Averaging just 8.8 seconds per shot, Ronnie hardly gave the referee time to replace the balls, as he so casually made his way round the table in quest of the £147,000 prize money.

Speaking to Colin Murray, the Rocket nonchalantly admitted that: “The 147 was memorable because I was young and it was a massive payday for me at the time, I’m not used to seeing pay cheques like that.”

In a long and lustrous career, Ronnie has gone on to achieve a record 15 maximum breaks.

Will the Rocket treat us to yet another absurd maximum break before his time is up? It seems that if anyone is capable of breaking the record for the fastest ever 147, it can only be Ronnie himself.

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