NATHAN ASPINALL believes that Michael van Gerwen can finally be toppled off the World No.1 spot over the next year. Stockport star Asp reckons MVG’s six-year reign on the throne could be ended by Peter Wright in the coming months.
Aspinall, PDC Home Tour champ from a week ago, is then wanting to follow World Champion Scot Snakebite to the top of the sport. He revealed on the Target Darts podcast:
“That is my target. Obviously Van Gerwen has been there for as long as my kids have been alive!
“He’s been there a long time and it’s time for someone to knock him off.”
I think it could be Peter (Wright) if he has a good year and another good World Championships. I do think that Peter could take that No.1 spot in the next 12 to 18 months.
“ it’s not going to be in the next year or two, I doubt it, but I do believe that I can be the World No.1 and a World Champion.“But it’s believing in it and I’ve got to do it. At the moment I am doing it and proving that these wins that I’ve had, these good runs, aren’t just lucky tournaments. I’m doing well and I do believe in the next five years certainly I can get to that No.1 spot which would be a dream come true.”
Aspinall, a World Championship semi-finalist two years in succession, is also hoping that the World Matchplay goes ahead in Blackpool from July 18. The tournament will definitely be the comeback to the big stage on TV for the sport but the PDC has been unable to confirm whether it will be at the legendary Winter Gardens.
He added: “To be fair I was itching to get back after two weeks. It’s been nice to spend some time at home doing things around the house that I wouldn’t have done if lockdown hadn’t happened. I’ve done all my garden up and spent some good time with the kids.
“It’s hard work for me because I’m not used to manual labour, I was originally an accountant. Digging and stuff isn’t my cup of tea!
“Obviously the Matchplay being the second biggest tournament of the year I think that’s a great way to kick it all back off.” “Personally I hope it goes ahead in Blackpool because the reception I got last year was phenomenal, even though I got beat the first game. It’s my home tournament, I’m only 45 minutes away from Blackpool.“Fingers crossed we can have some kind of audience there, even if it’s only 500 people, that’s better than nothing.”
Aspinall was also delighted to land the Home Tour title, defeating Gary Anderson, Jonny Clayton and Jelle Klaasen in the final group.He said: “It was a tough night, some quality players involved. So hopefully the first and only ever winner of the lockdown event. Even though it was nice to win it, I don’t want to have to retain it. Hopefully I’m the one and only.
“It was hard. The key part of it being hard was the rhythm, looking in the other player’s eyes, getting their reaction.
All you hear is the scores and the occasional comments.
“Luckily for me I did the trial run so going into the third group game I kind of knew more than anyone what to expect.“But I’d also played in a few online games with my mates in Stockport, I wasn’t doing particularly well.
“I did find it tough but I think it was my fifth night involved when I won the final. So I’d got used to the format and how to play the game differently.”
Pictures by Taylor Lanning