NorthernIrelandDarts.co.uk have been able to get an interview with ranked #4 in the PDC Order of Merit Daryl Gurney from Derry, in Northern Ireland. Daryl ply’s his trade all over the world in the PDC and is the current holder of the Players Championship.
He has steadily risen up the rankings to be one of the most dangerous power scoring players in the game – a proven winner – notably the 2017 World Grand Prix, 2018 Players Championship and the recent German Darts Championship in Halle 39, Hildesheim. We are very lucky to have Daryl answer our questions today.
So here we go.
You have had a tremendous last 3 years rising as high as number 3 in the world, at what point did things start to click for you?
It started to click in February 2016 – at the PDC Dutch Masters in Venray, Holland. I got to the final against MVG and it seemed to snowball from there. (MVG beat Daryl 6-2 in the final)
You are the reigning Players Champion, do you feel any added pressure now going into tournaments or do you just treat them like any other game?
Not really, there are so many events now that they all seem to merge into one lol.
Obviously you have quite an Irish feel team now with Matt at MDA Promotions taking on Kevin Burness and young Nathan Rafferty. How far do you reckon Nathan and Kevin can go? (Note: Kevin and Nathan are both from Northern Ireland also)
Kevin Burness had a great run at Ally Pally had he not drew Gary Anderson, I think he could have had another few rounds in him. He is struggling at the moment, but I am sure he will come back stronger.
Nathan is the real deal – he is the best young player I have ever seen.
The World Matchplay is just around the corner and it’s fair to say it’s probably the one you haven’t shown your top class form at as yet. How do think you will fare this year?
I want to win every event I enter and this year is no different. 2017 was a great event there for me as I reached the semi-final.
We know Brendan Dolan will probably be your partner in the World Cup. Will you be practicing together before the tournament or rock up at the competition?
I don’t think so…We never get a spare second and Brendan lives a long way away in Fermanagh, so we will just rock up!
The World Series events have been released with you being invited to them all so far. After reaching the final in Las Vegas, just how much do you enjoy playing in them and travelling all over the globe. It must be surreal for a lad from Derry to flying all over the world to play darts for huge amounts of money.
2017 I got to the final. (It doesn’t seem like 2 years ago!) It’s great but you rarely see the country just hotels and function rooms. It’s not all glitz and glamour.
Apart from the World Championship, what is your favourite on the PDC calendar?
My favourite is the World Matchplay in Blackpool.
You have had quite a lot of success on the floor and on stage. How different is the floor to playing on the TV stage events?
The crowds lol But in the end it’s just a dartboard. Just take each game the same, keep it simple.
Obviously you are still young in your career, but you are such an inspiration to the young darters back in Ireland. Who was your inspiration in darts and who did you look up to back in your youth?
The BDO guys really as I didn’t know the PDC was there as a young man.
How do you feel the overall game of Darts in Ireland north and south is at the moment?
At the moment it’s all great. There are lots of fantastic players all around the country. The future is bright.
Do you have targets or ambitions for the rest of 2019, or do you just take every match as it comes?
To win the PDC World Championship, that’s the aim for everyone really.
I recently watched you at the Premier League in Belfast and after it was obvious you felt like you didn’t perform as good as you can. It’s a feeling most of us amateurs feel after not playing to their best. How do you pick yourself up and go again?
You don’t have time to reflect just get on with the next event. You lose more than you win.
How different is the atmosphere in Dublin/Belfast playing over here, is it a boost for you?
All the premier leagues are great, but Belfast is the best for me support wise.
Where do you put yourself in terms of the best players in world darts right now and where do you feel you need to find improvement over the next few months to get yourself in prime position to have a serious crack at Ally Pally.
I am up there at number 3-4. It’s all about timing, hopefully my timing is right for January.
We know you use Winmau darts and they are very good I must say. But what was your first set of darts you owned?
My first set of darts were Phil Taylor darts.
Some players obsess over a missed double or performance/loss, and will hit the practice board after a match and others chalk it up to a bad day at the office as you can’t win every match. What side of the wire do you sit on?
No point in thinking, just get on with the next event.
And lastly we know you are a petrol head and have a car collection. So I’d like to play a game called Which Car?
Austin Mini Cooper OR Ford Escort Mk1 Escort
Lancia Stratos OR Fiat 131 Abarth
Audi Sport Quattro OR MG Metro
Peugeot 205 Gti OR Lancia Delta integral
Sierra Cosworth OR Renault 5 Turbo
Subaru Impreza OR Mitsubishi Lancer Evo
Ford Escort Mk1 obviously!
Audi Sport Quattro
205 – great car
Cosworth and last but not least the Evo.
Many thanks for taking the time out to do the questions and all the best for the rest of 2019. Daryl spends much of his spare time if not with family out at his cars – so he is a very busy lad but a genuine and honest guy who is a fan as much as a player – and a very talented and successful player at that. Thanks to Matt at MDA Promotions for allowing me access.