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Article: Wright out For Final Flourish for Scots Fans

Wright out For Final Flourish for Scots Fans

Peter Wright admits he is “gutted” to not make the Unibet Premier League Play-Offs but aims to go out with a flourish in front of his home fans. Snakebite, who missed six darts to win the title at the O2 a year ago, has remarkably only won four matches in this year’s campaign. Yet the multi-coloured mohican star has shown flashes of his brilliant best in doing the double over league winner Michael van Gerwen - two of only three defeats the Dutchman has suffered in 14 weeks. It’s been a bizarre four months for World No 2 Wright and it’s been one of the major shocks of the tournament that he hasn’t made the top four despite his undoubted class at this level. Wright takes on Daryl Gurney in Aberdeen tonight and admitted: “I’m gutted I’m not in the top four but I haven’t been good enough across the season, I’ve had too many ups and downs. “If I get picked next year then I’ll make sure I’m ready. I want to finish with a flourish in front of my home crowd in Aberdeen. “It will be very difficult against Daryl Gurney. He’s fighting for fourth place and I’m fighting to finish as high as I can and get as much prize money as I can.”
Gary Anderson also wants to finish his Unibet Premier League in a blaze of glory for the Dartan Army. The Flying Scotsman takes on Michael van Gerwen as he bids to seal his place in the final four tonight. Ando, 47, just needs one leg to book his Play-Off at the O2 in a week’s time but won’t be settling for anything less than a win for his home fans. He admitted: “I love coming home to play in front of my own fans. It’s always very special and I’ve got a decent record in Aberdeen. “Obviously Michael will be a tough opponent. I’ve just got to make sure I do enough to get to the O2 without any dramas. “It’s all about producing at the right times now, I want to win in Scotland and not let the fans down who never fail me. “I’ve only lost once in Aberdeen I think and that was to Michael last year so I guess I owe him one for that. We had a decent match in Newcastle earlier in the year, we always seem to bring the best out in each other. “I’m much happier playing in Scotland now than a few years back. I always struggled because I want to win so much for the fans, I really can’t bear the thought of letting them down. “In saying that, I felt sick as a dog all afternoon before playing at The Hydro in Glasgow a couple of months ago. It’s the only time I feel that way and it’s because I just want to win for the fans. “It’s mad really. I don’t get like that for any other matches other than the ones in Scotland. But I’m much better at dealing with it on the stage. I still get crazy goosebumps on stage when they sing my name. It’s the best feeling in the world. But then I need to concentrate on winning! “There’s one thing for sure, it won’t bother Michael. He’ll just get up there and do his thing. He lost both his matches in Rotterdam so he won’t be worried about beating me in Scotland. I’ve just got to stop him somehow.” The only other issue to be settled in Aberdeen, providing Ando gets the necessary one leg to qualify for the O2, is the final order of the top four and who meets who in the semi-finals. If MVG beats Ando at the BHGE Arena they will meet again in the Play-Offs in a week’s time at the O2. But that doesn’t worry the Musselburgh ace. He added: “I really don’t care where I finish in the top four and who I face at the O2. All I’m fussed about is playing my best game when I get there. “We all start equal again in London. It really doesn’t matter who has done what and where they have finished in the league. “It’s all about what happens on the night. All of us are capable of winning it and all four have shown they can produce when it matters. “Personally, I love the Premier League and especially finals night. I’ve won it twice and I like the thought of a hat-trick.” Gary Anderson, Raymond van Barneveld, Red Dragon Darts, Premier League Darts
Michael Van Gerwen booked his sixth successive top spot in the league last week but is still out to wreck Anderson’s Aberdeen homecoming. He said: “I’ve got an important few weeks coming up, I feel fantastic and I want to keep this winning feeling going. “I never want to lose, I fight for every leg and I don’t like to take anything for granted. “Even though I am safe in top spot, I want to show everyone how good I can be. “I’m Michael – I’m a winner, I do my thing and I don’t care what anyone else does.” Michael van Gerwen, MvG, European Darts Grand Prix
Michael Smith, who secured his Play-Off place last week with a 6-6 draw against Gurney, will take on Raymond van Barneveld in the opening game of the evening in Aberdeen. The St Helens ace insists he won’t be relaxing as he aims to secure a second-placed finish in just his second Premier League season on Thursday. He said: “I’m not going to relax against Raymond. Last time we played I beat him 7-0 and he’s going to try to do the same to me, so I know I can’t afford to take things easy this week. “I want to win as many points as I can to make sure I finish as high as I possibly can in the table and I want to keep the winning feeling going ahead of The O2. “To finish second in the Premier League at my second attempt would be a great achievement.” Peter Wright, Michael Smith, Red Dragon Darts, Premier League, PDC, Darts
By Phil Lanning (@lannomedia)

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