Mark Selby believes he could yet reach the modern era record of seven world titles won by old rivals Ronnie O’Sullivan and Stephen Hendry at the Crucible Theatre after regaining top form in his own backyard.
“I knew I could seal my place at the Tour Championship by going deep, and my goal was to make sure I qualified for that.
“So to actually win the title is great. It is certainly not impossible that I could get to seven world titles. Of course, it is incredibly tough and to have won four already is beyond my wildest dreams.
“But now I’m there, it would be great to win at the Crucible again. While I am still playing, I’ll give my all to do that. I obviously didn’t a great season last time, the way I was mentally meant I didn’t win so much money as usual and my ranking suffered.
“So I was a bit under pressure this season with money coming off, and I needed to shore up my place in the top 16. I still have goals. I’d like to win more world titles, more of the Triple Crowns and also get back to world No. 1. I have a chance of doing that now.”
Emotional scenes as Selby claims English Open title after very tough year
2010 world champion Neil Robertson shared O’Sullivan’s frustrations about “soulless venues” and scheduling with Selby – Crucible champion in 2014, 2016, 2017 and 2021 – agreeing he is right to have strong opinions on the state of the game.
But he believes the 39-time ranking event winner would benefit greatly from airing his views in the forum of organised meetings before speaking to the media.
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“Players including Ronnie have views and opinions about issues like the rankings and prize money – but that’s what player meetings are for,” said Selby, who could replace O’Sullivan as world No. 1 before the Crucible if he secures the £150,000 first prize at the Tour Championship.
“There was a very big one last week, all the senior WST Board members turned up. And players should turn up, rather than go off to the press. I turned up, asked questions and felt it was quite positive and constructive. What more can WST do?
“I haven’t been to all of them, but this one was big and important about the future of the game. Mark Williams came up early from Wales, and Shaun Murphy flew over early from Ireland.”
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