Snooker legend Steve Davis believes Ronnie O’Sullivan should be a major contender to win this year’s BBC Sports Personality of the Year after he stormed his way to his sixth World Championship title.
Davis, who also won the famous World Championship trophy on six occasions making him one of snooker’s legendary greats, called for O’Sullivan’s nomination just after he completed an 18-8 win over Kyren Wilson.
But despite O’Sullivan’s brilliance on the table now spanning the best part of three decades, he has never been nominated for the annual award which takes place every year in December.
No snooker player has been nominated since the shortlist system was introduced in 2010. A shortlist is made up by an independent panel of former sporting stars, journalists and media professionals.
The last snooker player to reach the top three was Stephen Hendry who came second in 1990 with Davis winning it two years before – the only snooker player to do so since the contest was devised in 1954.
But Davis said it was time for a change and for O’Sullivan’s brilliance on the snooker table to finally be recognised.
He said: “Wouldn’t it be nice to see him win Sports Personality of the Year
“It’s not been the best year for sport – surely he’s got to be up there for nominations this year.”
Davis’ fellow BBC pundit John Parrott added: “It’s a treat to come to the Crucible and see him play live and when he is absolutely at his best there’s nothing quite like it.”
In 2017 World Snooker Tour chairman Barry Hearn publicly criticised the nomination process for snubbing O’Sullivan and other snooker stars.
He fumed in a BBC interview with TV presenter Hazel Irvine: “We don’t produce enough geniuses in our sporting world to ignore a talent like Ronnie O’Sullivan. It is stupid beyond belief.”