Bookmakers are refusing to take on five-time world champion Ronnie O’Sullivan as he is firm favourite to claim snooker’s top prize at the Crucible.
O’Sullivan has not won the world title since 2013, but he is coming into the tournament in fine form with five ranking titles to his name – including his record sixth UK title.
Now many are predicting O’Sullivan is braced for another title, which would put him level on six with Ray Reardon and Steve Davis, and to within just one of all Stephen Hendry – who holds the record with seven.
“The Rocket is in wonderful form, and the Bookmakers are taking few chances here, at around 9/4 they are clearly expecting a sixth world title,” said OddsMonkey spokesman Peter Watton.
“It shows just how popular he is, the public love him and they are putting their money where their mouth is, you would not think that Mark Selby – a three-time winner – is the defending champion as he is available at 4/1.
“Indeed at the moment, the Bookmakers can’t see past The Jester and The Rocket – after the first two in the market it is Judd Trump at 7s and John Higgins at 8s – but the snooker has produced some big winners over the years so the fact O’Sullivan and Selby are so short, it does mean there is value elsewhere.”
Selected odds for 2018 Snooker World Championship:
Ronnie O’Sullivan 9/4
Mark Selby 4/1
Judd Trump 7/1
John Higgins 8/1
Ding Junhui 14/1
Mark Williams 14/1
Neil Robertson 16/1
Barry Hawkins 22/1
Shaun Murphy 25/1
Ryan Day 28/1
Kyren Wilson 33/1
Stuart Bingham 40/1
Stephen Maguire 80/1