Former Lakeside world champion Mark Webster admitted that he is ‘really struggling’ with dartitis, following his run to the last 16 of the European Grand Prix in Sindelfingen last weekend.
The Welshman defeated host-nation Berndt Roith in round-one last Friday, before dumping out world number five James Wade in a dramatic deciding-leg to reach the last 16, where he then succumbed to eventual semi-finalist Jelle Klaasen.
Nevertheless, in the aftermath of his victory over Wade, Webster opened up to German MC Elmar Paulke regarding his ongoing battle. “It’s difficult in a sense. I’m really struggling; it’s dartitis. I struggle with it. I’m all over the shop, maybe it puts players off, but it’s not done intentionally.
“It’s awful. I’ll take wins and I’ve got to play through it. If I can pinch a win here and there I’ll take it. I’m concerned about my attitude, but when you’re playing through dartitis, if you can take some positives then you’ll take it,” the 33-year-old candidly added.
Webster has been battling dartitis for a number of years, and is arguably one of the most high-profile players to suffer with the condition since five-time world champion Eric Bristow in the late 1980’s. Nevertheless, Webby has shown incredible resolve to climb back up the rankings; enjoying a fine run of form in the latter stages of 2015.
The Welshman, who won the BDO World Championship in 2008, reached the World Grand Prix semi-finals in October 2015, before going on to appear in the last eight of the Grand Slam just one month later. This catapulted Webster back into the world’s top 32 on the Order of Merit; a position he has comfortably maintained since then.
However, Webster admitted that it’s challenging for him to control his emotions when suffering with dartitis, after he was embroiled in an angry war of words with James Wade after their second-round clash. The left-handers both exchanged choice words and referee Russ Bray was forced to intervene, with security escorting Wade off the stage.
The Welshman clarified: “I was a bit frustrated. At the beginning I threw a couple of darts away. James was a bit annoyed with that, but it’s his job to jump on that. He’s having a go at me at the end there, I’m sure we’ll sort it out. I’m not playing well, I’m dragging players down, that’s what I do at the minute I’m afraid.”
Nevertheless, Webster insisted that he makes no apologies for his performances, as he battles valiantly in an attempt to return to top form. “I’m not apologising for it because I want to win. I want to try and get out of this slump and if I can pinch a victory against the world number five I’ll take it. I’m not apologising for anything; I’ve won the game.”
Photo Credit: Lawrence Lustig/PDC