Mark Selby had a painful defeat at the Crucible last year (Picture: Getty Images)

Mark Selby is pleased with how quickly he got over his painful defeat to Ronnie O’Sullivan at the Crucible last year, far from being the ‘bad loser’ that the Rocket has accused him of.

The two men played out a classic World Snooker Championship semi-final last year, with O’Sullivan edging the match 17-16 by winning the last three frames in dramatic style.

Ronnie’s seemingly reckless attacking intent, along with not properly trying to get out of snookers, riled up Selby and after the match he labelled the Rocket as ‘disrespectful’ for some of his shot choices.

The Jester from Leicester says that, while the defeat was obviously a hard one to take in such a huge match, he was quick to bounce back, winning the first tournament of this season at the European Masters and he is pleased with himself that he didn’t allow negativity to linger.

‘To be fair every defeat hurts me to a degree, but that one last year, because it’s the World Championships…you never know if you’re going to get there again to the semi-final, it’s such a tough tournament to even get to the latter stages, so that probably hurt a little bit more,’ said Selby after beating Mark Williams in the quarter-finals on Wednesday.

‘Luckily for me the season came round so quick you didn’t really have time to dwell on it, within a few weeks we were back at the European Masters and back on the table again. I forgot about it quite quickly, came back strong and won the first comp so I put it to bed straight away.

‘I was frustrated, more so with myself because I felt like I’d give it away in the third session, that’s where I felt like I lost it.

‘I knew I sort of had him, when you let somebody of Ronnie’s class off like that the game comes back to bite you. It was a tough one to take but at the same time I was quite happy with myself how I got over it so quickly at the start of the season.’

There appeared to be a bit of needle between the players after that match and well into the current season, especially when Selby beat O’Sullivan in the Scottish Open final and seemed to aim a dig at him in the winner’s speech.

Speaking ahead of this year’s World Championship, O’Sullivan said he was surprised to see how Selby had reacted in the immediate aftermath and in the months after.

‘I didn’t realise that result had affected him as much as it had,’ Ronnie told Sporting Life.

Ronnie O’Sullivan went on to win the world title after beating Selby in the semi (Picture: Getty Images)

‘Sometimes you can want something too bad, and then it’s hard to brush off a defeat, let alone a defeat how he felt like he was defeated.

‘After listening to his after match interview, it sounded like he was a bit of a bad loser really. He didn’t really take it well.

‘I was a bit surprised. I thought he would have given me a bit more credit for hanging in there and playing three amazing frames at the end and getting the victory. It seems he didn’t take it in that spirit.

‘That’s for him to get over. It doesn’t seem like he’s able to get over it really. They can be tough matches, I’ve had one or two of them in my career. They linger on for a bit. Hopefully he gets his head around it and moves on from it.’

Selby takes on Stuart Bingham in the semi-finals this year and is now favourite to win a fourth world title after Neil Robertson and Judd Trump were both beaten on Wednesday in the quarters.

Kyren Wilson takes on Shaun Murphy in the other semi-final.


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Will Ronnie O’Sullivan win the World Snooker Championship again? Ken Doherty and Alan McManus decide


MORE : Judd Trump assesses World Snooker Championship semi-final line-up after shock exit

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