Nicholson insists he has a ‘point to prove’ on his World Championship return

Aussie-Geordie Nicholson celebrates (credit:Lawrence Lustig/PDC)

Paul Nicholson admits he has unfinished business on the World Championship stage as he prepares to make his return to Alexandra Palace after a four-year absence.

Nicholson's last appearance on darts' biggest stage saw him suffer an agonising First Round exit at the hands of Benito van de Pas in 2014, following which he left his darts on the stage in fear that his career may be over.

The Asset, however, has battled back from the brink of the darting abyss to regain a PDC Tour Card and climb back into the world's top 64.

This year, he qualified for both the UK Open and European Championship, while also securing his spot at Ally Pally via the ProTour Order of Merit.

The 39-year-old, who has balanced his playing commitments with several media roles this year, admits he is relishing the opportunity for redemption on his return to the William Hill World Championship stage.
"I have stuff to put right, that's for sure," Nicholson told Live Darts.

"I've done enough, I've had a half decent year, but there's so much more I want to do and when I get on that stage it'll all come flooding back.

"I think it's just deserts for a lot of hard work I've put in over the course of the 12 months since the last championships.

"On the floor it hasn't been brilliant but the qualifiers for the European Tour events really have helped me this year.

"I've got through a lot of those and got myself in the European Championship which is brilliant, but when I've been on the stage I've actually felt alright.

"Beating Mensur Suljovic in Milton Keynes this year made me realise I can still do this."

Nicholson has been drawn to face Ireland's Kevin Burness - a debutant in the newly-expanded 96-player field - with the winner facing a Second Round glamour tie with two-time World Champion Gary Anderson.

Nicholson, who reached the Quarter-Finals in his debut World Championship campaign back in 2009, admits there have been times he doubted if he would ever set foot on the iconic World stage again.

"There have been times, I'm not going to lie, where I didn't think I would get back," he added.

"I put the darts down [on the stage] as a symbol because I wanted to get back there and pick them up but there have been times over the past few years where I've thought 'maybe it's not going to happen.'

"I've always been an adrenaline player and I've got to maintain that level of adrenaline, when it does dip I've got to find a way to bring it up.

"I'm not going to go to the levels of Gerwyn Price but I am the kind of player who needs the blood pumping to do the best that I possibly can.

"I've got stuff to prove and the biggest person I've got to prove it to is myself.

"I'm really looking forward to the challenge because I do deserve it. I can't wait to get the shades back on!"



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Nicholson insists he has a ‘point to prove’ on his World Championship return

Paul Nicholson admits he has unfinished business on the World Championship stage as he prepares to make his return to Alexandra Palace after a four-year absence.

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