Gary Anderson started playing darts by accident because it was cheaper than pool

Gary Anderson begins his latest – and potentially last – World Darts Championship campaign when he takes on Madars Razma tonight.

The two-time world champion has endured a barren two years since he lost to Gerwyn Price in the final two years ago and has tumbled down the rankings as a result. Earlier this year, he finished at the foot of the Premier League table and openly talked about his diminishing passion for the game as he comes towards the end of his illustrious career.

That has led to some fans to think he will soon retire from the sport. If and when he does, he will be able to look back proudly at his back-to-back world crowns in 2015 and 2016, plus many other titles.

READ MORE: Gary Anderson branded the 'Rangers and Celtic of darts' as fans predict retirement

For a player who didn’t start playing darts until his mid-20s, it has been a phenomenal career by any standards. Particularly as Anderson’s gravitation to darts was something of a happy accident – because it was cheaper than a game of pool.

“That's when the pool tables were in the pubs and it was £1 a shot,” he toldThe Telegraphback in 2018. “So if you play 10 games of pool that's 10 quid, whereas a game of darts costs nothing.

“I used to sit in the pub and play darts all night long – a couple of cans of Coke, that'd do me.

“Ever since I picked up a set of darts. I could play the game well. The first year I picked up a dart, when I was 25, I was unbeaten in the local league. I did that for two years then started the bigger tournaments.”

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Moving into the present, and in light of his poor form in 2022, Anderson took the drastic decision to not even attempt to qualify for his favourite tournament, the Grand Slam of Darts in Wolverhampton.

He believes the move has given him a “kick up the backside” ahead of the Worlds.

“That was a lesson learned, it’s my favourite tournament and I deserved to miss it. It’s given me kick up the backside,” he said earlier this month.


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