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Gurney still determined to be top 10 after World exit

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Aiming higher: Daryl Gurney was knocked out of the world championships by Michael van Gerwen but he took a set off the world No 1

Aiming higher: Daryl Gurney was knocked out of the world championships by Michael van Gerwen but he took a set off the world No 1

LAWRENCE LUSTIG

Aiming higher: Daryl Gurney was knocked out of the world championships by Michael van Gerwen but he took a set off the world No 1

Daryl Gurney last night fell to a 5-1 quarter-final defeat at the hands of world No 1 Michael van Gerwen, yet says his World Darts Championship roller coaster has left him determined to break the top 10.

"I want to put the hard work and practice in, I want to be dedicated, I want to make this my life," the Londonderry thrower said.

"By making it my life, I don't want to be 'Daryl Gurney who got to the last eight', I want to go on and do much more than that."

Having suffered when the crowd turned on him in his 4-3 last-16 win over Mark Webster, Gurney came back determined to win the Alexandra Palace crowd back over.

His winning set against Mighty Mike certainly helped.

"It was good up there and I thought I was there, or thereabouts, I missed a couple of doubles, but that is why Michael is in the Premier League, because he takes out the 86 and 90-odd finishes.

"That was the difference between me and him, I couldn't even get a shot for myself at those kinds of finishes. That is why he made that look easy."

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For Gurney, his quarter-final defeat was not a lesson in finishing, holding your nerve, confidence, or any other of the sport's crucial disciplines.

It was merely a reminder of the level in quality required to break the top 10, or even higher.

"I know what it takes to be at the top and to be at the Premier League, I've always known that.

"What I've said in every interview from the start of this competition up until now is I know that finishing is the most important part of it. I can rack up 100s, and the 110s, and if it's scoring I am up there with the best in the world, but I'm not finishing well enough, or as often enough, so that's why I am 24th.

"The other lads can take out top finishes like I take out a 32."

Now 30 years of age, Gurney knows he is potentially at a crossroads, but insists he will continue to shape his whole life around darts.

"If I get my finishing right, working on that 80 to 120 range, I can be up there with James Wade, Michael, Phil Taylor, Gary Anderson, Peter Wright, Raymond van Barneveld - all of them. I will keep working.

"Until I do it as regularly as they do though, it will be tough."

Elsewhere, old foes Raymond van Barneveld and Phil Taylor played out yet another epic battle on the oche, the Dutchman seeing off the 16-times World champion in a thriller.

The man from the Hague held his nerve to win a late-night classic by five sets to three.

Reigning champion Gary Anderson looked impressive in the afternoon session to end the run of No.7 seed Dave Chisnell.

Anderson moved a step closer to lifting the Sid Waddell Trophy for a third successive year after triumphing in an match of extraordinary quality, which included 33 180s, just one short of the record set in his final victory against Adrian Lewis last year.

In the other last eight game, Peter Wright defeated James Wade, also by five sets to three, and now plays Anderson.


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