Gilding aiming for Ally Pally best

Latest sports news from the Bury Free Press
Latest sports news from the Bury Free Press

Andrew Gilding has set himself the challenge of producing his best ever run at this year’s PDC William Hill World Darts Championships

Twelve months ago, the Walsham-le-Willows Sports Club thrower reached the last 32 of the sport’s most prestigious competition after whitewashing Gerwyn Price 3-0, before being on the wrong end of a 4-0 scoreline against two-time champion Adrian Lewis.

During the opening round on Saturday afternoon, Gilding is up against world number 32 John Henderson, who leads the head-to-head record 2-1.

However, Gilding believes he is playing well enough to at least reach the third round at Alexandra Palace.

“Overall, I am happy with how I am throwing in practice,” he said.

“There is not much between me and John — he is a decent player and I will have to play well to beat him. But if I can take my chances and get a win on the board, that builds momentum. The target is to go further than I have before.”

One thing Gilding believes will work in his favour is the fact that this will be his third appearance at the tournament.

The sheer scale of the event in north London has been known to overwhelm those lacking experience, but there are no such issues for the 46-year-old.

“I think it probably gets easier every time you go there,” he said.

“There will be no surprises for me anymore. I know where everything is and I know the routine.

“It means things should be a bit more relaxed and hopefully that will be reflected in the darts I produce.”