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Taylor’s Troubles!

Posted by Stuart Pyke at 15:22 on 17th December 2010 in UniBlog

Taylor’s Troubles!

It was a strange sight and a strange experience watching Phil Taylor really struggle in his opening match at the World Championship.

Rarely has it been seen in the biggest tournament of all.

Clearly, the great man has other things on his mind at the moment, but as he pointed out after the win over Gary Mawson: “At this stage, a win is a win is a win!”

To a certain extent he was right, but he was desperate to send out a message to all the challengers to his World Championship crown but it just didn’t happen.

His mind was elsewhere and his game suffered.

His third grandchild has been born two months premature and although the baby is now thankfully out of intensive care, it has obviously been weighing heavily on Taylor’s mind….and nobody can blame him. After all, there are more important things in life.

On top of that, there’s no doubt that Taylor came to the Alexandra Palace under pressure and in the spotlight after a series of defeats had the critics reaching for their knives.

But this is just the challenge that Taylor relishes and when he is written off in many quarters, it is when he will come out fighting and when he is at his most dangerous.

He now has time to refocus and get his head straight for the challenges to come after Christmas at the Ally Pally….and that time at home could be crucial to Taylor.

But he now knows that he faces one of the toughest challenges of his career to win a 16th World Championship crown.

An average of 88.49 and 25 missed doubles tells its own story and there’s no doubt that if Phil had been playing an in-form opponent, he would have faced a real battle…..as it was, Gary Mawson just didn’t show up.

It was certainly strange being in the commentary box at the Ally Pally, talking about Taylor’s trials and tribulations….and there were 1200 darts fans in the arena, who were stunned by what they were watching.

But he knows he has to perform….that series of defeats, going back to October, is bound to have had some effect on his confidence.

Remember, he lost to Adrian Lewis at the World Grand Prix, then James Wade beat him in the final of Championship League Darts…..back-to-back defeats to Simon Whitlock and Joe Cullen followed in a Pro Tour weekend in Ireland. He lost to Mark Walsh in a Players Championship event and then of course, he and James Wade suffered that stunning defeat to Spain at the World Cup of Darts!

The likes of Lewis, Wade, Whitlock, Barneveld, Anderson, Nicholson, Stompe, Webster et all will believe they can switch off ‘The Power’ here in London. They will all be gunning for Taylor now, that’s for sure.

And Phil Taylor may be far from his best at the moment, but it would take a brave man to write him off at these World Championships.

By STUART PYKE at the Ladbrokes.com World Championship

Photo courstey Lawrence Lustig / PDC

There is 1 comment to this post

Posted by Carlo at 17:46 on 22nd December 2010

Next match Taylor will be back in normal form i hope.

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