Wizard rediscovers old magic

Simon Whitlock. Picture: Lawrence Lustig
Simon Whitlock. Picture: Lawrence Lustig
Louis Arnell hit at 120 finish. Picture: Sarah Standing (160515-7312)

Newcome have got Admiral’s number

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Simon Whitlock believes he can launch a sustained assault on World Matchplay glory after hitting top form.

Success in a Players Championship event last month provided a welcome boost for the Wizard of Oz.

He then reached the final of the European Darts Trophy in Germany last weekend.

And now is excited about the prospect of challenging for one of the biggest titles on the calendar in Blackpool.

‘Winning that event was a huge boost for me,’ said Australian Whitlock, who is now based in Waterlooville.

‘I had a tough start to the year with the Premier League but I felt my best form was coming back towards the end of that and I’ve played some good darts since.

‘With the standard of player on the circuit now, winning a tournament is a great achievement so I was thrilled.

‘It’s put me in high spirits and I can now put everything in to trying to have a really good win in the Matchplay.’

World number four Whitlock, 45, takes on Kevin Painter in round one on Saturday.