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Last Updated: Saturday, 16 April, 2005, 21:30 GMT 22:30 UK
Amazing O'Sullivan stuns Maguire
By Phil Harlow
BBC Sport at The Crucible

Defending champion Ronnie O'Sullivan
O'Sullivan was pushed all the way by the unlucky Maguire
World number one Ronnie O'Sullivan produced a sensational recovery to defeat Stephen Maguire 10-9 in the first round at The Crucible.

Resuming 5-4 ahead, O'Sullivan opened up with a 96 to extend his lead.

O'Sullivan's excellence seemed to bring out the best in Maguire and the Scot won four straight frames on his way to a 9-7 advantage.

Under pressure, O'Sullivan showed nerves of steel to level at 9-9 and a 68 break sealed a brilliant win.

Despite the dramatic nature of the victory, the defending champion gave an ambivalent reaction to the win.

"It was alright - it was nice to get through, but equally, it would have been OK if I'd have got beat, to be honest," said O'Sullivan

"I don't see it as pressure - I just see it as a game of snooker.

"The butterflies get going and you just do what you've got to do. I don't see it as an issue."

I'm still in shock
Stephen Maguire

A distraught Maguire blamed a simple missed black in the 17th frame for his agonising defeat.

"I'm still in shock, to be honest - I don't know what to think," said the 24-year-old.

"I missed the black, it was a twitch. I thought I'd done it but it was too easy and it comes back to haunt you.

"If you want to win the tournament, you have to beat the likes of Ronnie O'Sullivan and the top players."


0-72 (50) 23-69 (59) 80-17 (72) 72-40 14-60 (54) 115-0 (115) 74-50 (73) 22-66 99-12 (99) 96-37 (96) 0-92 (92) 53-60 1-102 (102) 31-52 89-1 (89) 1-71 (70) 69-54 (Maguire 54) 74-23 (74) 68-0 (68)

Interview: Ronnie O'Sullivan

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