Henderson hoping to turn up the heat on his World Championship rivals

Big Hendo celebrates (credit:Lawrence Lustig/PDC)

John Henderson wants to turn up the heat on his rivals at the 2018/19 World Darts Championship after practising in sweltering conditions.

The Highlander kicks off his William Hill World Championship campaign on Friday afternoon against dangerous German Gabriel Clemens.

Big Hendo has revealed his red-hot routine that he hopes will fire him up for a genuine tilt at Alexandra Palace.

"There's been an awful lot of practice and it's been very warm," said Henderson.

"I’ve got this thing where I close all of the doors in the practice room, close all of the windows and whack the heating up full blast.

"The heat on the stage at the Ally Pally isn’t as bad at the Winter Gardens at Blackpool for the Matchplay, but it’s not far off and I’ve started doing this to try and prepare.

"The room heats up to it’s absolutely roasting and then I get throwing. 

"Obviously, the heat off the radiators is a different heat from what you get on the stage, but it can be just as uncomfortable, I can tell you.

"By the time it gets to 20 minutes in, you’re sweltering.

"My missus comes in from work sometimes and she’s like: What the hell is going on in here? Are you trying to melt the place?

"I dread to think what the heating bill is going to be when the next one drops through the letterbox.

"They’ll be thinking I’ve been heating up the whole of the street.

"But you need to try and think of anything that gets you a wee edge for the games and it’s worth a shot."

The Ally Pally has not been the happiest hunting ground for 'Hendo', but he did defeat Daryl Gurney a year ago before bowing out to eventual champion Rob Cross.

The Highlander has three ranking Quarter-Finals and a Semi-Final under his belt this season and will look to confirm a clash with Michael Smith by denying the dangerous debutant.

He added: "My preparation has been good. I’ve done a lot of exhibitions and I feel as though I’m playing well. I’m happy enough with the year going into the Worlds.

"Obviously, it’s not as good as last year when I got to the semi-finals of the World Grand Prix. Going out in the first round of that one this year wasn’t the plan, but my floor game has improved.

"I was unfortunate against Kim Huybrechts in the Matchplay and thought the same thing against Daryl Gurney in the Grand Prix.

"I know the game is there, it’s just about getting the right break.

"Apart from my visit when I was carrying an injury and lost my first game, I’ve enjoyed all of my trips to the Ally Pally.

"Getting the win against Marko Kantele last year was big. It wasn’t a big result to the pundits who expected me to win, but it was massive for me.

"It’s so hard to win any game and I’ve played Clemens three times on the floor and lost every single one of them.

"But it’s a different thing on that stage. Completely different - the crowd is going daft and it’s so quiet on the floor events.

"He played alright in his first game and I was expecting him to beat Aden Kirk, but, if I turn up and play my game, I’m sure that I can win.

"Win or lose, I’m coming up the road on Saturday. Hopefully, I’ll be playing Michael Smith on the 27th, so I’ll go back Boxing Day if I can do the business."


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Henderson hoping to turn up the heat on his World Championship rivals

John Henderson wants to turn up the heat on his rivals at the 2018/19 World Darts Championship after practising in sweltering conditions.

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