2024 World Grand Prix: Mark Allen Gives His Thoughts on Playing Ronnie O’Sullivan

Mark Allen claimed a remarkable 4-2 victory over the challenging Jack Lisowski in the first round of the 2024 Spreadex World Grand Prix. In an exclusive post-match interview with SportsBoom provided insights into Allen's stellar performance, shedding light on his focused mindset, and unwavering confidence as the defending champion. The Northern Irishmen also addressed the controversy involving Ali Carter and Ronnie O'Sullivan, shedding light on his previous encounters with the The Rocket.

Louis Hobbs
Louis Hobbs

Last Updated: 2024-01-18

Wade McElwain

7 minutes read

A Fully Loaded Pistol

In an exclusive post-match interview with SportsBoom, Mark Allen discussed his stellar performance in the World Grand Prix, securing a notable 4-2 victory over the formidable Jack Lisowski. The Pistol demonstrated exceptional form, showcasing his prowess on the snooker table.


In a captivating display from the onset, Mark Allen set the stage ablaze with dazzling century breaks of 103 and 110, treating the crowd to a snooker masterclass. Jack Lisowski swiftly countered, showcasing his prowess with a high break of 93, evening the match at 2-2 with a solid 75 break.


Undeterred, Allen reclaimed control with a brilliant third frame, securing another century break of 108. Despite Lisowski's efforts, Allen's relentless pursuit left his opponent struggling to regain momentum.


As tension escalated, Allen sealed victory in spectacular fashion. Although narrowly missing a potential fourth century, an 82-break proved sufficient as he secured the match with a 4-2 triumph, advancing to the next stage of the tournament.

An Unfortunate Draw

Allen, who considers Lisowski to be one of the toughest first-round opponents, reflected on his performance, highlighting the quality of his game. Despite a minor lapse in concentration, Allen remarked, "I missed a black and three one, but other than that, I didn't really make any mistakes." The small errors he did commit were forced by Lisowski, who impressed with his outstanding safety play – a facet not commonly associated with his style of play.


Acknowledging the unpredictability of snooker, Allen admitted, "I felt complete control, but then he [Lisowski] turned up and then didn't see a ball for two frames. I didn't feel like I'd done anything wrong really, but that's what he can do to you."



Up Next, Mighty Mouse

Looking ahead at the tournament draw, Allen discussed potential matchups, including the next round against Zhang Anda. Remaining focused on his game, he stated, "I haven't really looked any further than that. If I'm in the quarters or semis come the weekend, I'll be a match for anyone. I don't really care too much about who I play, just about how I play."


As the defending champion of the World Grand Prix, Allen expressed confidence in his ability to make a deep run. He emphasised, "I do believe if I get here to Friday or Saturday, I'm more than capable of going on to win this tournament." Allen aims to build on his recent successes, eyeing prestigious titles like the Players Championships and Tour Championships later in the year, two titles which are both currently held by Shaun Murphy. 

Controversy Surrounding Ronnie O’Sullivan

Addressing potential challengers, including the legendary Ronnie O'Sullivan, Allen remains unfazed. Reflecting on their past encounters, he remarked, "Honestly, it was no different for me than playing Ronnie in any other tournament because it's always a big occasion when you play Ronnie."


Mark Allen also shared valuable insights on the controversy surrounding Ronnie O'Sullivan and Ali Carter. Allen emphasised the mental challenge of facing O'Sullivan, stating, "You can't play the occasion when you play Ronnie. You almost need to forget you're going up against him or he'll get in your head." 


“I didn't really shy away from it. I've beat him in the world championships. I've beat him twice in the Masters, so it just so happened on that day. He was a little bit too good for me. He played flawless snooker all day,” Allen commented on his experience playing O’Sullivan in the UK Championships, showcasing how Ali Carter may have not mentally prepared himself for the encounter. 

Title Defence Incoming

In conclusion, Mark Allen's 4-2 victory over Jack Lisowski at the Spreadex World Grand Prix was a display of snooker brilliance, marked by electrifying century breaks and unwavering determination. As he advances to the next stage of the tournament, Allen's strategic outlook, coupled with his ability to overcome challenges, positions him as a formidable contender.


Image credit: World Snooker Tour (WST)

Louis Hobbs
Louis HobbsLead Journalist

Meet Louis Hobbs, our esteemed authority on all matters sports-related. With a wealth of knowledge and experience, Louis effortlessly emerges as our go-to expert. His particular expertise in the realms of darts and snooker sets him apart and brings a level of insight that goes beyond the ordinary. Louis also holds a deep affection for all things related to US sports, with a special emphasis on basketball and American football, which stand out as his particular favorites. His content may not resonate with you, if you don't consider Lamar Jackson the most skilled player in the NFL.