STARVED SI TAR­GETS TI­TLE DE­FENCE

DARTS

Midweek Sport - - SPORT -

SI­MON WHIT­LOCK is “hun­gry” to win fur­ther ma­jors as he pre­pares to de­fend his Euro­pean Cham­pi­onship ti­tle.

The Aus­tralian won his first crown at the Euro­pean’s last year, when he de­feated Wes New­ton to claim first prize.

And the world No.5 (right) has drawn in-form Bel­gian Kim Huy­brechts as he be­gins his bid to re­tain the ti­tle in Muel­heim, Ger­many.

“It was the great­est mo­ment of my ca­reer when I won the Euro­pean Cham­pi­onship last year and it’s given me the hunger to win more ma­jor ti­tles,” said Whit­lock.

“We all know that you can’t win ev­ery­thing, but the feel­ing I got by win­ning the Euro­pean Cham­pi­onship is driv­ing me on.

“It was a bril­liant week­end and to win three games on the fi­nal day to take the ti­tle was a big ask but I man­aged it.

“To win this again would be an­other mas­sive achieve­ment be­cause the field’s in­cred­i­bly strong.

“I’ve got Kim first and he’s been sen­sa­tional for the last 18 months and deserves to have bro­ken into the world’s top 16.

“If I get past him, there’s James Wade and Ray­mond van Barn­eveld in my half of the draw, so even get­ting close to the fi­nal will be tough, but it will be a great event.”

Phil Tay­lor opens his Euro chal­lenge against Hol­land’s Vin­cent van der Voort.

World No.4 Wade plays Gary An­der­son to­mor­row and Van Barn­eveld plays Ger­many’s To­mas Seyler.

Book­ies’ favourite Michael van Ger­wen plays Bel­gium’s Kurt Van De Ri­jck and world No.3 Adrian Lewis meets Aus­trian Men­sur Suljovic.

POS­I­TIVE SPIN: Graeme Swann was cleared to play in the Chal­lenge match against Es­sex

TY­MAL TELL: Eng­land hope­ful Ty­mal Mills blasts

with both bat and ball

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