Gary Anderson is recovering well from one of the biggest scares of his life and now the Scot believes he can be a major player at this year’s World Matchplay.
The Team Unicorn world No.4 has admitted to being “frightened beyond belief” by an eye problem, which he thought could threaten his darts career.
He was forced to withdraw from the German Darts Championship in Berlin last month after his eye dried up and he couldn’t throw his darts.
“It was an awful time because I just didn’t know what was wrong and it was very scary to be honest,” Anderson said.
“I was thinking all sorts, so it was a huge relief when I found out what was happening,” he added.
“It turned out to be a problem with my tear duct. It wasn’t working. Every time I blinked it was like having sandpaper rubbed on my eye. I had problems with hayfever, then an infection and it just got worse.”
But after several trips to the hospital, Anderson is now 95% recovered and has been taking four different types of drops.
And after missing several tournaments, he has been back throwing darts for a week as he prepares for another tilt at the World Matchplay – a tournament which hasn’t been kind to him since his switch to the PDC.
“It was great to get the all clear and I am enjoying my darts and I have been hitting 9 darters in practice and my finishing has been up at 70-75%, so if I can take that to the stage in Blackpool, I’ll be ok!”
But Anderson has been handed one of the toughest 1st Round draws at the Winter Gardens.
He will take on Dean Winstanley, who has been in good touch since moving across to the PDC from the BDO at the start of 2012.
“He is a dangerous player and I will have to be at the top of my game. But if I play well and finish well, I fancy my chances.”
And the Scot will be playing with his new ‘scallop’ shaped darts. “I love them!” he said. “And they feel very comfortable.”
It will be good to see Anderson back in action. It has been a tough 12 months with this health scare and family bereavements.
He is destined to win many more ‘Major’ TV tournaments in the PDC but he also knows that it is time to start producing his very best consistently on the big darting stages.
• And you can buy his brand new ‘scallop’ darts right now from Unicorn! They are Gary Anderson 24gm Maestro Premier Phase 2
By STUART PYKE
Photo courtesy Lawrence Lustig / PDC