Ronnie O'Sullivan advanced to the last eight of the European Open in Malta with a 5-1 win over Scot Chris Small.
The former world champion was behind in each of the first three frames but won them all to take a 3-0 advantage courtesy of breaks of 58, 81 and 46.
He clinched the match with a run of 112 in the sixth frame and said: "Chris made me work but I was enjoying it."
Asked about the possibility of becoming world number one again he said: "We can sit and talk about numbers all day."
Next season's number one position could be up for grabs following the first round exit of Mark Williams against Anthony Hamilton.
But O'Sullivan said: "As long as I'm champion of my own life then I'm happy. Snooker is only a small slice of the whole cake.
"This week I've passed a big examination. I've surprised myself and I'm delighted with the way things are working out."
O'Sullivan will face Stephen Lee in the quarter-finals after the world number five battled past Steve Davis 5-3.