World Championship 2019: Neil Robertson 'dangerous opponent' with relaxed attitude

By Michael BeardmoreBBC Sport at the Crucible Theatre, Sheffield
Neil Robertson
Neil Robertson thrashed Michael Georgiou in his first-round match at the Crucible
Betfred World Snooker Championship
Venue: Crucible Theatre, Sheffield Dates: 20 April-6 May
Coverage: Watch live on BBC One, BBC Two, Red Button, iPlayer, Connected TV, BBC Sport website and BBC Sport app.

Neil Robertson says his ultra-competitive side has "died" because of his off-table battles - but he believes that makes him a more "dangerous" World Championship contender than ever.

The 2010 winner begins his second-round match against fellow former Crucible champion Shaun Murphy on Thursday (13:00 BST).

Robertson has previously publicly admitted dealing with a gaming addiction, while his partner Mille has suffered depression.

"Even if I don't win this tournament again, it's irrelevant," said the 37-year-old Australian.

"The last few years I've been desperate to win - you think 'it's been five years since the last one, six years, seven years'.

"But with what I've been through the last couple of years away from the table, I guess that kind of part of me died.

"That obviously makes me a very dangerous opponent because I'm not really bothered about the result.

"Even though I would love to win this tournament, I don't care. I just want to go out, play and hope that the crowd really enjoy the matches."

That attitude has served Robertson well this season, having won three ranking events - the Riga Masters, the Welsh Open and last month's China Open - in his most successful campaign to date.

Two runners-up finishes to Ronnie O'Sullivan in the events before China have seen him arrive in Sheffield as the player in arguably the best run of form.

"Six finals, winning three tournaments - whatever happens, it's my best-ever season by a million miles," Robertson added.

By contrast, Robertson's next opponent Murphy has had an awful campaign, only once progressing beyond the third round of a ranking event when reaching the Scottish Open final in December.

Murphy, 36, said it has been "the worst season of my life" after whitewashing Chinese youngster Luo Honghao 10-0 in round one but Robertson is not expecting an easy passage through to the quarter-finals.

"Shaun will definitely be up for it because he doesn't like not being talked about in terms of potential candidates to win this tournament," Robertson added.

"A last-16 tie in previous years, they used to be pretty easy to negotiate, but Shaun is a previous winner."

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