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Wizard darts at Wembley

Posted by Sid Waddell at 12:50 on 18th May 2010 in UniBlog

I am sitting happily in my Pudsey office looking back with a warm glow on 14 weeks of a brilliant Premier League. Goodness knows what fun we will have at Wembley Arena this weekend but my Geordie water tells me that the Wizard from Oz will play the Sorcerer from Stoke in the final. Taylor and Whitlock are the buzz names in the sport right now and I reckon their rivalry will be the axis of the game for a good while.

But, about that nostalgia...

The O2 at Greenwich gave us a great start to the PDL with Phil Taylor beating Simon Whitlock in a re-match of the World Final. But how well did the Aussie pick up after that, with 80% checkout stats in three matches. After a few weeks of struggling with an injury to his right foot, we saw Simon crush James Wade 8-4 in the Toon. Poor James. Occasionally he looked like a man trying to eat candy floss in a wind tunnel! I hope he relaxes and lets his great talent flow at Wembley.

And as for Mervyn King, he made Samson Agonistes look like Peter Kay on his birthday night; at Aberdeen he snarled repeatedly at the crowd. O.K, they booed him but Manley got the same and so did Brissy in his day. These two shrugged off the jeers and shut up the hecklers. Merv should just sneer and bear it.

My favourite night was at Liverpool where we got one or two Beatle references like ‘It’s been a hard day’s FLIGHT’ into the commentary patter.

On a more serious note, Mystic Sid predicts that the PDL final will be poised at 8-8 between Taylor and Whitlock when they come to the final three legs. Even I am not daft enough to say who will then be first to 10. Though Simon is at the moment the more deadly on the doubles...


Ever since my Harold Robbins-type novel ‘Bedroll Bella’, about a young Geordie groupie girl, was banned in 1973, I have been looking for inspiration for another.

For six weeks now I have been working on ‘The Life of Jimmy Casson’,
a novel with a darts background about a Scottish lad born into poverty and raised in an orphanage. Wee Jimmy has bad parental role models, trusts nobody, resents authority and is angry and bitter when he leaves a set of dirty manual jobs to become a darts professional. He is a Jekyll and Hyde character; when sober he is jolly and makes friends, but when drunk acts extremely anti-socially.

Despite all this, the public love him....

Needless to say ‘Jimmy’ is a fictional character, a pastiche of colourful traits very evident in the early days of the darts boom. My job is to get empathy for him.

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