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Replay: O'Sullivan wraps up remarkable win
Ronnie O'Sullivan completed a stunning 17-6 demolition job on Stephen Hendry to cruise into his third World Championship final at The Crucible.
The two-time champion produced a masterclass as he overwhelmed the helpless Hendry with a superb display.
O'Sullivan had led 12-4 going into the evening session after winning all eight frames of a one-sided morning session.
And breaks of 120 and 123 in the evening session saw him sweep to victory with a full day to spare.
He produced a masterful clearance of 120 to dominate the first frame of the night before Hendry finally struck back with a break of 85 to end his 12-frame losing streak.
When O'Sullivan missed a blue to the middle to let his opponent back in, Hendry cleared to the blue to drag it back to 13-6.
O'Sullivan held his nerve to win the next 75-0 with a break of 68 and then breezed through a wonderful break of 123 to go 15-6 in front.
He then benefited from two outrageous flukes to take control of the 22nd frame with a 56 and wrapped things up after a bad Hendry miss on the final black in the 23rd, meaning he had won 16 of the last 18 frames.
When I was 14, Hendry won his first title and he was a god
"I was really pleased to win the match and get through," said O'Sullivan.
"The first session was a complete result for me because I could have gone 7-1 down.
"I think I would have struggled to make in-roads into that deficit against someone like Stephen who doesn't let a lead slip. After that I felt really good out there."
O'Sullivan had been in irresistible form in the morning, making breaks of 93, 57, 87, 133, 135, 85 and 70 to inflict Hendry's first ever session whitewash at The Crucible.
The seven-time world champion had never lost a session 8-0 in nearly 20 years of travelling to Sheffield.
Hendry made life difficult for himself by missing numerous chances early on, but O'Sullivan - who made a 147 maximum break in the second round against Mark Williams - continued his magnificent form with a breathtaking display.
The two-time world champion showed all his skills, effortlessly switching from left to right-handed as required, while keeping the cue ball under the tightest of control throughout.
The match will have brought back uncomfortable memories for Hendry, who lost 17-4 to O'Sullivan at the same stage of the tournament in 2004.
Hendry and O'Sullivan heap praise on each other
Hendry congratulated O'Sullivan at the end of the match and told him that was the best he had played against.
"For Stephen to have said that means a lot to me," he added.
"When I was 14, Hendry won his first title and he was a god.
"He is the best player to have played the game. For him to say that means a lot to me."
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