Adrian Lewis has bemoaned the lack of ‘support’ shown to him by the Professional Darts Corporation following the injury woes that blighted his 2017 season.
The two-time world champion endured a nightmare year, largely down to a serious back injury. ‘Jackpot’ was forced to undergo surgery which left him sidelined for a number of months, and barring a run to the World Matchplay semi-finals in July, it was a real struggle for the Stoke-on-Trent star.
Lewis suffered opening-round defeats at the World Grand Prix and World Series Finals and lost all three group games at the Champions League of Darts. He also failed to qualify for the European Championship and Grand Slam, before his miserable year culminated in a shock first-round defeat at the World Championship against Kevin Munch.
This saw the 33-year-old plummet to 20th on the PDC Order of Merit, having previously held a place in the world’s top four for almost seven years. As a result, Lewis missed out on a spot in the lucrative Premier League for the first time since 2009 and he has yet to be selected for any World Series events in 2018.
Speaking to Elmar Paulke at last weekend’s European Darts Open, Lewis admitted: “It’s been difficult because obviously I’ve had an operation on my back which put me out for half the year last season.
“Yeah alright I went down in the rankings, but I don’t think I got enough support from the PDC in that respect. I think when I’ve been in the top four for what, seven years, I think the PDC didn’t support me in that respect, but now I’ve got to prove myself again,” he added.
It’s been an eventful start to the season for Lewis, who was handed a three-month suspended ban and a £3,000 fine by the Darts Regulation Authority following his heated clash with Jose Antonio Perales in the first UK Open qualifier in Wigan back in February.
Nevertheless, he’s made a relatively solid start to the Pro Tour season, reaching two quarter-finals and making two semi-final appearances, as he begins his bid to re-establish himself in the world’s top 16.
Photo Credit: Lawrence Lustig/PDC