PIPE DREAM JUSTIN TIME FOR PREMIER Taunton ace targets top tournament
JUSTIN PIPE is aiming to crown his rise into darts’ elite with a place in next year’s Premier League competition.
The Taunton thrower has been one of the form players in the past 18 months – winning five ranking titles and reaching the quarterfinals of the World Matchplay and World Grand Prix.
The 40-year-old is amongst a host of stars – including Michael van Gerwen, Wes Newton and Dave Chisnall – battling to make a Premier League debut in 2013.
“Barry Hearn has told me I’ll get a Premier League place if I make the top four, and that’s what I’m after,” said Pipe, currently 11th in the Order of Merit.
“I don’t want to cut my nose off to spite my face though because for some players the ambition of getting into the Premier League has overtaken the rest of what they’ve been doing in that year.
“I felt sorry for Wes Newton because last year the Premier League was within his grasp and his game with me at the World Championship was massive for him. It was on his mind and it ruined his game – and I took full advantage.
“I’m not going to put myself in that position – I’ll just keep plodding on and if I make it then great, if not then that’s fine and I’ll carry on.”
He added: “It’s only really my third year having a full-time go at the PDC circuit, so I’m overwhelmed with how I’ve come on.
“A year ago I was something like 36th – now I have overtaken Raymond van Barneveld and I am 11th in the world. It’s amazing!”