Ronnie O'Sullivan will not defend Champion of Champions title

Ronnie O'Sullivan
O'Sullivan has won both Champion of Champions tournaments since the event was revived in 2013

Ronnie O'Sullivan will not defend his Champion of Champions title in Coventry next month.

The five-time world champion, 39, was included in the draw but said last week that he would decline the invitation to play without stating why.

Tournament organiser have now confirmed the two-time winner will not feature.

O'Sullivan's decision not to play means Ruhr Open winner Rory McLeodexternal-link will now be assured of an invite to play in the event, which begins on 10 November.

Writing on Twitter last week, O'Sullivan said:external-link "I don't want fans buying tickets for Coventry thinking I'm playing. I said I hadn't entered weeks ago. Nothing's changed."

World champion Stuart Bingham will play the opening match of the tournament, while the likes of Neil Robertson, Shaun Murphy and world number one Mark Selby will also be in action.

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