O’Sullivan beat Thai whizkid Sunny Akani 6-5 in York.
But that was only after a stroke of good fortune for the five-time world champion.
Akani was just a few shots away from winning the biggest match of his career when he accidentally potted a blue while also sinking the final green.
It gave O’Sullivan the impetus he needed to secure a final frame.
But the drama didn’t stop there.
The Englishman was on course to wrap up the last frame without reply but a freak missed red let Akani back into it at 60-0 down.
Both men missed routine reds and the frame soon descended into attritional snooker play.
But O’Sullivan eventually carved out an opening to round on the colours and wrap up the win.