REIGNING world champion Ronnie O’Sullivan was at his sublime best as he cruised to his fifth Masters title with a crushing 10-4 win over Mark Selby.
It was another victory which showed and proved the Rocket is still the best in the business and will go into the World Championship in three months time as a huge favourite.
The contest was as good as over at the end of the first session which saw O’Sullivan win seven out of the eight frames played as he went into the evening’s finale with a huge 7-1 lead in the bag.
Despite showing some fight late on, Selby could do little to prevent O’Sullivan collecting his fifth Masters trophy following his triumphs in 1995, 2005, 2007 and 2009 and winning the huge cash prize of £200,000.
With five World Championships, five Masters and many more ranking titles to his name, nobody can now question O’Sullivan has the amount of silverware his sublime talent deserves.
And if he continues this form then more glory will set to follow towards the latter stages of an eventful but successful career on the green baize.
Going into the final having won 18 out of 21 frames in the tournament, O’Sullivan was full of confidence and that was evident from the off as a break of 97 gave him the opening frame. Another fine break of 70 soon doubled his lead to 2-0.
A 2-0 lead soon extended to 3-0 with a break of 96 and O’Sullivan made it 4-0 winning a tight fourth frame which he won with some brilliant pots on the final colours.
Matters did not change after the mid-session interval as the world champion dominated the fifth frame to go even clearer ahead at 5-0.
A relieved Selby got off the mark when he potted a fine long yellow to set up a frame wining clearance and in doing so avoided joining Mike Hallett as the only player in the history of the Masters to suffer a whitewash defeat in the final.
And Selby should have it made 5-2 in the next dramatic frame but failed to make the most of a good position as a poor safety on the final red led to O’Sullivan to force a re-spotted black which he potted brilliantly into the middle pocket.
Losing that frame was a real kick in the teeth for Selby and it was no surprise to see a resilient O’Sullivan take the next frame on the back of it to increase his lead to 7-1 at the halfway stage.
The evening session started in the same fashion as the afternoon session as O’Sullivan edged closer to the winning line with a break of 90. Selby pulled two frames back but O’Sullivan managed to go into the interval on the verge of glory leading 9-3.
Much to Selby’s credit he kept O’Sullivan playing the waiting game reducing his deficit to 9-4 but the The Rocket sealed the win with a clinical break of 72.