World Snooker chairman Barry Hearn has complained to the BBC after it cut short coverage of Ronnie O’Sullivan’s comeback match.

BBC2 switched to a repeat of classic comedy Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Em at 8pm on Saturday before O’Sullivan completed a first-round victory in the snooker World Championship.

The match was not moved to another channel or shown on the red button, meaning viewers had to find the coverage online to see O’Sullivan beat Marcus Campbell.

After being alerted to the incident, Hearn tweeted: “Sorry to all snooker fans for the poor BBC coverage last night. Letter of complaint sent to BBC today .”

A BBC spokeswoman said: “We’re obviously disappointed that we weren’t able to show the conclusion to the World Championship first round match on Saturday night on BBC2.

“We are committed to delivering great snooker content to our audiences as demonstrated by the increased number of broadcast hours for the World Championships which means we are able to bring the sport to as wide an audience as possible.

“We have also recently extended our contract with World Snooker which will see us bring major snooker tournaments to BBC audiences until 2017.”