Gary Anderson has been recounting his struggles to get ‘match fit’, and in the groove for doubles, before Scotland tremendous win in the 2019 World Cup of Darts.
This years event has been delayed by Covid-19 and will now take place between November 6-8th. In the meantime the PDC have released a special highlights program with some of the events stars recounting their memories.
Anderson said: “It’s the only time in the year I play pairs and I’ve said that to Peter. Back years ago in the BDO you always played pairs, triples, games like that, you were used to it.
“So once a year is bad enough. It’s hard to get into, hard to get into your throw. “When I came back to darts my main target was the Worlds and a floor tournament, that was the first step”
“I think I had played in one or two ProTours prior to the World Cup, I was struggling”.
“Once we got across there, you know what you’ve got to do.
“Unfortunately we never got to play Netherlands or England because that would have been even sweeter”.
“Even when we started that tournament we kicked off well, I felt we were on it here. It just clicked from there.
“William and Steve had played well the whole tournament. But it was just good to get back.
“It’s not just yourself you are playing for, it’s someone else as well. If you lose a game you’re a bit naff because you are putting all the pressure on your partner. It works both ways.
“It was long overdue. We had lost in two finals to the two teams you couldn’t get harder with the players. We finally did it.
“But Willie and Steve are a pair of good lads. You have a cracking laugh with Willie.
“I reckon we’ve got a few good years left hopefully. To be 21 again in this day and age would be great. We can still show them the way.
Although the tournament has been moved back to be held from November 6-8, fans can look back on some classic games in the World Cup’s history in PDCTV and at the OfficialPDC YouTube Channel.
PHIL TAYLOR believes that Gary Anderson will be “reborn” when darts returns after lockdown. The 16-times World Champion has been back in the spotlight thanks to online events with Paddy Power against Raymond van Barneveld and Fallon Sherrock.
But The Power is predicting a big comeback for pal Ando who finished runner-up in the PDC Home Tour a fortnight ago. He also laughed off suggestions by Michael van Gerwen that he only made controversial statements to stay in the spotlight.
Taylor said: “Someone like Gary Anderson will benefit from this enforced break. The time at home with his family will do him a world of good – he will almost be a player reborn.
“I’d have loved being in Michael’s day as his peak. I do enjoy his company to be quite honest, he’s a funny lad.
“Am I trying to wind him up? No.
The question was who would be World No.1 if not Michael, it would be Peter Wright and Gerwyn Price is also climbing up the rankings. “But Michael will lose the fact that people are scared of him. He isn’t winning the titles like he used to.
“Do I need publicity? Not really. I think I’ve done 30 years at the top. If he can do 20 years at the top he’ll be doing well. “But he doesn’t bother me in the slightest. Do I care? No, not really. I’m quite happy where I am. “I can’t run him down, the lad has done brilliantly.
“You need someone on a pedestal and Michael was the one who took over from me. But I don’t think Michael will ever get me out of his head. “If you asked him truthfully, he misses me. Because it’s not the same. A lot of the players have told me this. The practice room where it used to be brilliant, ask James Wade, ask Gary, they say it’s dead. The characters are not there anymore.
“So deep down I think Michael would love me to come back as a rival. And then you’d see Michael up his game again because he’d have no choice.”
Taylor is convinced that the dominant MVG will find it hard now that he has a young family and a new baby son who was born in early April.
He added: “I’m really pleased for him. There’s nothing like fatherhood for changing your life. But it will get harder for him now – when you have to leave your loved ones week in, week out to play in the Premier League, and you’re only at home one or two nights a week, it’s really tough. Especially when your family is so young.“
Back in the day, I had to spend a lot of time on the road to pay the bills because there wasn’t a lot of money in the game. I got £24,000 for winning my first world title – now you get £500,000. But it’s getting harder and harder because the schedule is so full, and the travel is relentless.”
The Power is predicting a big comeback for pal Gary Anderson who finished runner-up in the PDC Home Tour a fortnight ago. The 16-times World Champion believes that Ando will be “reborn” when darts returns after lockdown.
“Someone like Gary Anderson will benefit from this enforced break.
The time at home with his family will do him a world of good – he will almost be a player reborn.
Taylor acknowledges it’s not all one way though, speaking exclusively to Darts World’s lead reporter, the Potteries legend recalled some of the challenges of combining family life with professional darts:
“when you have to leave your loved ones week in, week out to play in the Premier League, and you’re only at home one or two nights a week…
it’s really tough. Especially when your family is so young.“
The two Phils covered a wide range of topics, including recent remarks about MVG and how he sees the game changing since his retirement during a recent conversation for Darts World. You can read the full story later today at dartsworld.com
GARY ANDERSON admits that he’s too “chilled” and doesn’t get angry enough on the oche anymore.
The Flying Scotsman narrowly missed out on the Home Tour online title, losing to Nathan Aspinall in the final group on Friday night.It was agonisingly close for Ando, losing just one game out of 12 for the entire tournament but it was a costly defeat to The Asp.
But the two-times World Champion, 49, revealed that he’s far more laid-back these days. He said:
“I’m getting more older and chilled now, I don’t get angry. It used to work. You played tournaments with folks shouting in the background ‘hope you get beat’ and stuff like this. The only way to punish them was to beat the boy you were playing. That kind of gave me the fire.
“Then when folk start supporting you, it kills that fire off.
It’s weird. If I do get a bit of a pee on, I do seem to play well.”
Ando had originally pulled out of the tournament because of poor WiFi signal. But after The Sun newspaper story revealed his patchy internet plight in mid-April, a local firm came to his rescue. It almost delivered a fairytale finish with victory.However, Aspinall won the crucial fourth game clash in the final group 6-5 and it proved to be the pivotal moment of the tournament. He continued:
“Nathan goes on these silly four/five leg demolition jobs. Once he starts scoring like that, he’s tough to beat.
“I bet he’s jumping about like a jack rabbit ready to throw,
that’s what he’s like! He’s a fantastic player, absolutely fantastic” .
“I had a good hour before we played, felt like they were going well. “Nathan’s scoring over the past few weeks has been fantastic. He makes a wee mistake on the doubles but he’s that far ahead on the scores, it makes it quite easy for him.
“If he hits his scores and doubles like he usually does, he takes some stopping.“ “I was just starting to get into it again. But this has been good, I’ve learnt some technology, it’s been a learning curve, I’ve enjoyed it.”
Anderson also confirmed the folklore tale that his first first ever three visits to a dartboard ended in 180, 140, 180 scores. He added: “Yes that’s true. It came very very easy.
If you speak to any of the boys in Scotland, the counting, that’s what let me down.
“I knew if I got to the final I wouldn’t have to mark, that helped me quite bit.”
NATHAN ASPINALL reveals he has gone from sublime arrows to making slime with his daughters. The World No.7, who has roared up the rankings over the past 18 months, is getting used to life at home, social distancing shopping for his grandparents, and homeschooling.
Stockport star The Asp takes his place in the PDC Home Tour Championship group tonight against Gary Anderson, Jonny Clayton, and Jelle Klaasen. He admits: “I spent the first week of lockdown making slime with my two daughters. I leave the clearing up to the missus!“We haven’t got the biggest back garden, so it’s just been painting and a bit of homeschooling. We have Brooke who is eight and Milly is two.
“We immediately set up a bit of a routine with Brooke doing an hour or two a day of school work and proper activities. It’s hard for the kids because they’re not seeing their friends so we have to do our best for them”.
“It’s hard for everyone really. I’ve been doing the shopping and get medication for my grandparents who live just five minutes away. They’ve been self-isolating for three weeks now. They leave a list under the green bin, I collect it and then leave the stuff outside their front door.”
“I’m actually loving spending time at home. It’s going to really tell me how strong my relationship with the missus is!
“We were planning to get married next year. It’s good for us to see how it is to be a normal couple day after day. “We were meant to book the venue last week but we couldn’t do that because they are not taking any further bookings.”
Aspinall admits that he is so relieved after two World Championship semi-finals and a UK Open win gave him money in the bank to survive the Covid-19 lockdown. But the kind-hearted rising star is concerned along with other top players of the plight facing pals and rivals on the breadline.
“I feel very lucky to be in an OK situation”. A lot of my family are in trouble with work. My mum works for the Co-op, my dad and stepdad are both self-employed and have no savings and are very worried.
“If push came to shove, I will do my best to help my family. I do look at my life and think ‘Thank God I’ve got this money in the bank’.
“It’s not even just getting through the situation we are in now. But when it all gets back up and running, the pressure I would have been under would have been incredible. I would be in debt and needing to put food on the table again.
“It’s been really hard for the players outside the top 32″.
When it does all start up again that’s what so many players will be facing, real pressure to win matches.“Any money that they have managed to save will have gone just surviving through the lockdown.“I’ve been in that position before and it’s really not nice, trust me. It’s so hard to play darts with that pressure.”
“To be fair to the PDC and PDPA they are constantly in touch with us and have been a real help throughout this time.”
Pix: Taylor Lanning
The Asp will attempt to capture another PDC title this evening when he does battle, with Gary Anderon, Johnny Clayton, and Jelle Klaasen, for the Low6 Home Tour title.
Championship Group Friday June 5 (1930 BST) Nathan Aspinall v Jelle Klaasen Gary Anderson v Jonny Clayton Jelle Klaasen v Jonny Clayton Nathan Aspinall v Gary Anderson Gary Anderson v Jelle Klaasen Jonny Clayton v Nathan Aspinall All games are best of 11 legs.
Fans in the UK & Ireland can watch through the Sky Sports App.
As well as being shown through a series of bookmakers’ websites, the Low6 Home Tour will also be broadcast live by a number of the PDC’s international broadcast partners listed below.
GARY ANDERSON is ready to do a ‘Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’ and come off the bench to be a sensational PDC winner.
The Flying Scotsman went viral after The Sun newspaper exclusively revealed on April 17 that a lack of strong WiFi signal made him pull out of the Home Tour.
However, thanks to that story a local firm sorted his broadband and now the double World Champ is unbeaten in nine matches. Ando goes into the final tonight (Friday) aiming to go out in a blaze of glory in Solskjaer style, who famously came off the bench to win Sir Alex Ferguson’s Manchester United the Champions League in 1999.
He said: “I could be the first name on the Home Tour trophy – and I hope I’m the last.“If we are playing this tournament again in 2021, we’ll know the virus is still around. “I’m still getting used to the set-up because I’m useless with technology. I had to get Rachel to help me on the first night. “Playing at home over the internet, using screens and tablets to find out how the other guy is doing, has been weird and I’ve found it quite difficult at times”.
“But now I’ve come this far, it would be nice to win it – and maybe, in years to come, we’ll look back at 2020 as the summer we were locked down.
“I was the first winner of the Phil Taylor Trophy when it was named after him at the World Matchplay, so maybe this is a chance for another ‘first’. But I’m really looking forward to getting back on stage – I want the hunger back.”
The PDC are ready to reveal their plans for the World Matchplay which was set to be played at the Winter Gardens, Blackpool from July 18. It is likely that will be played behind closed doors, possibly at a different venue.
Anderson added: “It’s always a laugh at Blackpool because the start of the tournament coincides with the start of the kids’ school holidays in Scotland, so there were always loads of Jocks in the crowd.
“The Winter Gardens is always a great place to play, but if we have to hold it behind closed doors this year it will be very different”.
“As it stands, the players coming from overseas will have to go into quarantine for two weeks when they arrive in the UK. “Even if you are only coming over from Holland, that means you have to spend two weeks in a hotel before you come out to play darts – and not many hotels are open yet. Where are they going to stay? “And how are players based in Britain supposed to get to the venue if there are no hotels available? Do we drive ourselves to the venue? There are lots of things to sort out”.
“If they move it to later in the year, so be it – but there is already going to be a heck of a lot of darts at the back end of the year already, and you wonder if there will be enough hours in the day for all of it.”
In May, Darts World launched its special ‘Lockdown Archive’ also known as ‘Darts World Freemium‘. The archive was set up to help entertain darts fans during these tough times.
Back in April 2018 Gary Anderson featured on our cover. Gary and Michael Smith also gave an interview for the magazine, John Gwynne offered his thoughts on ‘darting around’ Australia and Rob Cross’s (Target) darts were reviewed.
With Gary reaching the final of the PDC Home Tour last night we thought fans might enjoy a look back at his previous success. There are more than 50 issues available, free of charge, by simply clicking here.
Whatever your darting interest, there’ll be something for you!
With a recent change in ownership, Darts World is embarking on a new era in its history and exciting times lie ahead, including some innovative developments that are coming this summer. Make sure you keep up to date at dartsworld.com
In the meantime, enjoy our gift of free content to you by clicking here and signing up: FREEMIUM
Gary Anderson and Jelle Klaasen secured places in the Low6 Home Tour Play-Offs Championship Group on Wednesday.
Two-time World Champion Anderson and former Lakeside Champion Klaasen booked their spot in Friday’s Home Tour decider by claiming wins over Dave Chisnall and Mike De Decker in their opening two matches of Semi-Finals Group One.
Chisnall gained consolation with a 6-5 win over De Decker in their final match of the night, before Anderson saw off Klaasen 6-2 to top the Group One table.
It now makes it nine victories in a row on the Home Tour for Anderson, having won all three of his groups undefeated.
The final two places in Friday’s Championship Group are on offer in Thursday’s Semi-Finals Group Two, as top 16 stars Rob Cross, Nathan Aspinall, Jonny Clayton and Joe Cullen face off.
Registered PDCTV members can also watch for FREE through the official PDC App.
Low6 Home Tour Play-Offs Semi-Finals Group One – Wednesday June 3 (1930 BST) Gary Anderson 6-5 Mike De Decker Dave Chisnall 2-6 Jelle Klaasen Mike De Decker 3-6 Jelle Klaasen Gary Anderson 6-3 Dave Chisnall Dave Chisnall 6-5 Mike De Decker Jelle Klaasen 2-6 Gary Anderson
GARY ANDERSON believes a stage lollipop man won’t catch on when darts returns to the big stage. Helpers with Stop-and-Go signs have been trialed in darts events in Germany to ensure players know when to throw and keep a safe distance.
The PDC is set to announce their schedule for future tournaments, and it’s likely the World Matchplay in Blackpool will take place without fans. There will be strict social-distancing measures in place to comply with government rules – and a stage lollipop man. But Ando, who plays his PDC Home Tour semi-final tonight (Weds), isn’t keen, admitting:
“I can’t see that catching on. You have to throw your darts, take them out of the board and get off the oche at your own tempo without waiting to be told. I don’t think it’s for me.”
“In darts, as much as any other sport, the fans are part and parcel of the whole occasion.“We’re up on stage doing our jobs, but they generate the atmosphere by enjoying themselves and wearing their gear.
“I watched some of the snooker the other night and that seemed to have the same kind of atmosphere behind closed doors as it has in front of a crowd – it’s a quiet sport by nature. “I can’t deny I’ve loved the peace and quiet of being at home for two months, but it’s a bit weird playing online against somebody who could be thousands of miles away.“
“Even in Pro Tour events on the floor, there is usually a bit of noise in the background, and I’m still getting used to competing when there’s just silence all around me. “I like to think I play the right way: I throw my darts, get out of the way as quick as possible and let the other guy have a go – but it’s weird when the other guy isn’t there, it’s not easy to get into a rhythm.”
Ando, 49, takes on Jelle Klaasen, Dave Chisnall, and Mike De Decker in the online streaming event semi-final and is yet to lose a leg over the past two groups. But he’s also not keen for life to get back to normal just yet, adding: “It will be strange if we bring darts back on stage behind closed doors, but the country’s in a mess.“I’m one of those folk who thinks we should stick at it (lockdown) until the virus is wiped out completely unless we want to go back to square one again.
“We’re being told to send our kids back to school, but if MPs are not willing to go back to the House of Commons yet, why is it safer for teachers and their kids”?
“You try telling a five-year-old kid he’s going back to school but he’s not allowed to play with his pals in the playground. It’s not going to happen.”
Anderson originally could not get strong enough WiFi for the Home Tour and it would be typical if he now went on to win the event. Gary also admits he’s enjoying time at home and away from the tour. He said:
“To be honest, I’m quite happy with my own company – everyone knows I’m at my happiest when I’m back home, so I’ve quite enjoyed the last couple of months.”
“When I practice at home, I’ve normally got a couple of mates who come round, and obviously that’s not been happening lately so I haven’t had a lot of practice. “In that regard, I’ve been quite pleased with the way it’s gone on the Home Tour – I was pleased with how I played against Luke Humphries the other night, and at times I’ve felt like I’ve been getting my throwback to what it was.”
The fixtures for Group One of the Low6 Home Tour Semi-Finals have been confirmed ahead of Wednesday’s event.
The innovative home-broadcast event reaches its conclusion this week, with the Last 32’s challenge to take the title culminating in the Championship Group on Friday.
The players who won through from Groups One-Four in the Last 32 will compete in Group One of the Semi-Finals, with two-time World Champion Gary Anderson headlining Wednesday’s action.
Dave Chisnall, the winner of 15 PDC ranked events, is joined by former Lakeside Champion Jelle Klaasen and Belgian prospect Mike De Decker, a four-time PDC Unicorn Development Tour event winner, in bidding to claim the two places in Friday’s Championship Group.
The round-robin action remains the best of 11 legs for the semi-finals, with Anderson’s tie with De Decker opening proceedings from 1930 BST ahead of the meeting between Chisnall and Klaasen.
All Low6 Home Tour Play-Offs action will be broadcast live on PDCTV for FREE to ALLregistered PDCTV users, regardless of membership type.
Registered PDCTV members can also watch for FREE through the official PDC App.
Fans in Great Britain and Ireland can also watch the action through the Sky Sports app.
As well as being shown through a series of bookmakers’ websites, the Low6 Home Tour Play-Offs will be broadcast live by a number of the PDC’s international broadcast partners.
Low6 Home Tour Play-Offs Last Eight Group One Wednesday June 3 (1930 BST) Gary Anderson v Mike De Decker Dave Chisnall v Jelle Klaasen Mike De Decker v Jelle Klaasen Gary Anderson v Dave Chisnall Dave Chisnall v Mike De Decker Jelle Klaasen v Gary Anderson * Top two players qualify for Championship Group
The fixtures for Group Two of the Low6 Home Tour Semi-Finals will be confirmed following Tuesday’s Last 32 Group Eight.
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