Peter Wright discusses his confidence ahead of the Grand Prix and the battle for the world number one spot. Watch coverage of the World Grand Prix from October 3-9, live on Sky Sports.
By Brian Barry
Last Updated: 02/10/21 12:00pm
Peter Wright is in a confident mood ahead of the World Grand Prix this week.
And why wouldn’t he be? ‘Snakebite’ enjoyed a remarkable summer, picking up his first World Matchplay title, before claiming the World Cup for Scotland alongside John Henderson.
But the 51-year-old is not done just yet. The world number two is heading to the Morningside Arena in Leicester bidding to add a Grand Prix title to his illustrious CV.
And similar to the tournaments which he won earlier this summer, he feels he has what it takes to go all the way.
“It’s the feelings I got before them tournaments. I felt like myself and John had a great chance of winning the World Cup. And the Matchplay, I felt weirdly confident in my own ability to beat anyone in the world. I proved that and did it,” he outlined.
“So I’ve been saying I fancy this tournament for the past few weeks now, so fingers crossed the same thing happens.
“It’s up to them if they want to listen! I’m just pre-warning them!
“We’ve got the crowds back. Last year I didn’t enjoy it behind closed doors. It’s no excuse, but it gives you an amazing feeling when you walk out playing in front of the crowd. It’s great playing in front of them.”
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The big three
Wright is relishing the three-way race at the top of the PDC Order of Merit, as he vies with Gerwyn Price and Michael van Gerwen for the world number one spot.
“I’m looking forward to being number one,” Wright smiled.
“Winning [the Grand Prix], picking up this tournament will help to catch up on Gezzy. And we’ve got a few more to come up. Obviously I’ve got to defend the World Championships, and I’ve already said I’m going to win the Worlds this year. So I should be number one at the beginning of next year.
“I think Gezzy is playing fantastic darts at the moment. But how long is it going to last? He’s got his injury which keeps coming up. I’ve had similar sort of things in my elbow and it’s horrible. You can’t predict when it’s going to come.
“He rested himself for Gibraltar, pulling out of the World Series. And that did the job. He has done some amazing averages recently. Obviously, he’s beaten Michael again. But Michael is not quite on his game. It’s coming back, definitely, but it’s not quite the Michael of old. But that’s coming.
“Of course he can come back. He’s young, winning all those titles and being number one in the world, he’s got that hunger. Now he’s got not just me and Gezzy challenging him, you’ve got other players out there. All these other guys that are playing some fantastic darts. It’s just anyone’s at the moment. But for number one at the moment, it’s between us three.”
Having won the World Championship and Matchplay, the Grand Prix is one of the biggest prizes missing from Wright’s record. He’s eager to set that straight this week.
“It’s an amazing tournament. It’s a leveller. It doesn’t matter how good you are. You’ve both got to hit that double to get off and finish,” he outlined.
“It’s extra pressure for us playing, because we’ve got to hit two doubles.
“Just keep calm really, don’t get annoyed. If you don’t get off with your first three, you’re hoping they don’t get off with a 160, or a big score and punish you. It’s a bit of luck as well you need for the double-start.
“I’ve been on the board a lot, a lot of practising, trying to figure out which set of darts to use. Hopefully I’ve found the right set. I’m looking forward to it.”
Darts is back on your Sky Sports screens when the World Grand Prix gets under way – join us for coverage from the Morningside Arena, starting on Sunday, October 3. Check out daily Darts news on skysports.com/darts, our app for mobile devices and our Twitter account @skysportsdarts