Ronnie O’Sullivan revealed his new look is a tribute to former snooker star Willie Thorne.
The five-times world champion, considered the best snooker player ever, showed off his new moustache while playing in the Championship League on Friday.
On the table, O’Sullivan eased to comfortable wins against all three of his opponents to move to the next stage of the competition – snooker’s first competitive event since the coronavirus lockdown.
And The Rocket told ITV Sport after his third successive 3-0 win that the new moustache was homage to Willie Thorne who is currently suffering from leukaemia.
Thorne played during snooker’s boom in the 1980s and is considered today as one of the sport’s finest characters. According to Cue Tracker earned total prize money of more than £1million despite winning just one major competition.
He also appeared as a guest on fun snooker TV game show ‘Big Break’ and also appeared and recorded lyrics to the famous ‘Snooker Loopy’ song by Chaz and Dave.
Asked about his new moustache in an interview, O’Sullivan replied: “It’s just homage to Willie Thorne.
“I thought, Willie had a moustache with no hair and I’ve got a moustache but with some hair.”
Meanwhile, world champion and world number one Judd Trump sailed through to the next stage of the Championship League with three comfortable wins on the tournament’s opening day.
But there was no such joy for three-times world champion Mark Selby who failed to win his group as China’s Liang Wenbo pulled off a surprise win to reach the next round.