Ronnie O’Sullivan to ‘grapple’ with UFC star Paddy the Baddy after record beaten

Ronnie O’Sullivan has revealed he will be heading to UFC star Paddy Pimblett’s gym to take part in grappling sessions after winning a record-equaling seventh world snooker title. The Englishman defeated Judd Trump in the final at the Crucible last Monday to become the oldest winner in the tournament’s history. O’Sullivan will now take an extended break from snooker in the aftermath of his win.

During that break, he is planning to visit his friend and UFC star Pimblett at his gym in Liverpool. The pair first met in February when O’Sullivan was taking part in the Merseyside Masters, before the snooker star took in Pimblett’s fight at UFC London in March. The Baddy won that bout against Rodrigo Vargas in the first round, before he travelled to see The Rocket defeat Mark Williams in the Tour Championship.

The blossoming friendship is now set to see O’Sullivan travel to Merseyside and take part in a grappling session.

O’Sullivan has been close to Pimblett since February (Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

“I was always a boxing fan but then I watched a couple of UFC fights and I absolutely loved it. The grappling, there is such skill involved in that, then there’s the fighting side of it. I’m into UFC, cage fighting, even Cage Warriors, the guys who are coming up,” O’Sullivan told The Sun.

“Some of those fights are brutal because they want to get to the UFC and they’re fighting for their lives there. I went to Paddy’s gym to watch his drills and I was open at the time to getting into a cage to do a bit of sparring. At some stage I will go to the gym in Liverpool and get grappling.”

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The 46-year-old has previously revealed that he fell in love with mixed martial arts when he went to a fight night.

His win at the Crucible last week means he has equalled Stephen Hendry’s record, but O’Sullivan is remaining humble despite many branding him the greatest snooker player of all time. “I just enjoy playing and competing. Does it really matter who’s the greatest?

To me it doesn’t. It’s just great to be at the high end of your sport,” O’Sullivan said when asked whether he views himself as the greatest. “I won’t consider myself the greatest if I win eight.

No, not at all. I don’t want to be considered the greatest. I want to be known as someone who loves snooker and just loves playing.

That’s it.”

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Pimblett is yet to confirm his next fight after defeating Vargas at the O2. But he has insisted that he does not plan to be an overly active fighter, despite his unbeaten record in UFC, in which he has won both of his fights. “It makes me laugh when people are commenting on my stuff and things saying, ‘He’s not active enough.

He doesn’t fight enough. He only; he should be fighting four times a year.’ Why? Why should I fight four times a year?

Give me a reason when I’m earning more outside the cage than I am in it,” Pimblett told Food Truck Diaries.

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