Gary Anderson has launched a scathing attack on PDC bosses over the hectic scheduling of tournaments, after edging through his first-round tie at the World Matchplay on Saturday evening.
The two-time world champion was involved in last weekend’s inaugural U.S Masters in Las Vegas, having competed in the Shanghai Darts Masters just one week earlier. The Scot was then thrust into action on the opening night at the Winter Gardens, alongside his fellow World Series rivals Peter Wright and James Wade.
Anderson battled past former Lakeside world champion Christian Kist in a high-quality first-round contest; averaging 101.95, crashing in ten maximums and converting 34% of his attempts at double. Kist averaged 99.96, piled in nine 180’s and boasted a checkout success rate of 43%, but it still wasn’t enough to overcome the world number two.
Nevertheless, speaking to Sky Sports in his post-match interview, an angry Anderson suggested that world number one Michael van Gerwen was receiving preferential treatment with regards to tournament scheduling.
“I always thought the reigning champion opened the night at the darts?” Anderson questioned. “You’ve got me and James [Wade] here and we’re absolutely done in. I thought Michael would have been playing tonight as the reigning champion but somehow he’s disappeared and he’s playing on Monday.
“You saw Wadey earlier, he was absolutely shattered. I think we’ve been done over with the schedule. I think it’s a scam against the old boys to get us out of the way but unfortunately we can still play,” the Scot told tournament sponsor BetVictor.
Anderson was forced to produce the goods against an impressive Kist- who acquitted himself excellently on his World Matchplay debut. ‘The Flying Scotsman’ is yet to go beyond the semi-finals at the Winter Gardens, but he’ll be hoping that 2017 is his year.
He admitted: “It’s always good to get through. I’m happy with the win and I’ll take it. Christian is a steady player and once he starts finding his range and his speed he sticks in but I pinched it. It’s been hard; we’ve been on the road a bit and I was lucky at the end.”
Photo Credit: Lawrence Lustig/PDC