Ronnie O’Sullivan gave Dominic Dale a potting masterclass and rewrote the record books at the same time to book his place in this year’s Northern Ireland Trophy final.
The Rocket raced to a 6-0 victory at the Waterfront Hall, leaving Welshman Dale shell-shocked with a stunning 53 minute victory.
The two-time world champion’s win was the quickest ever best-of-11 frame match, beating Stephen Hendry’s 6-0 semi-final win over Dave Harold at the 1993 International Open in Plymouth.
O’Sullivan was on fire with breaks of 65, 64, 84, 75, 63 and 67, helping him to establish a 4-0 lead at the interval in just 38 minutes.
The former world number one amassed a staggering 418 points in the first four frames, while world number 40 Dale rarely got his hand on the table and managed just 19 points.
It got even better following the interval with O’Sullivan adding further breaks of 106 and 63 to deny Dale a place in only his second ranking event final.
In total O’Sullivan amassed 608 points to Dale’s 29.
“I'm very conscious that snooker needs to be watched by people,” said an upbeat O'Sullivan.
“I'm sacrificing match play because it’s all about getting bums on seats. I’m going to play like that all the time.
“Playing like that has given me the enthusiasm to play. I want to make a difference and help to make snooker a big sport again. I don’t want to be the person blamed for bringing snooker down. Something needs to be done so that people don’t want to turn their TV’s off.
“There’s plenty of characters in this sport, with Mark Williams, Shaun Murphy and John Higgins. People want to see exciting matches.”
O'Sullivan revealed he has even considered staging his own tournament, one which he wants to be fast and exciting.
“I want to put my own tournament together. It’s all about entertainment and we need to get away from all this long, drawn out play,” he added.
“I’ve been talking to a few people and we all need to get our heads together to make things happen. This year’s final should be two or three hours long, and not spread over two sessions. We should shorten the matches.
“People have got be prepared to change because it’s all about compulsive viewing. I’m in the business of entertainment, and that’s what I want to do.”