Wade hails the Winter Gardens as “The last great venue in darts”

Wade reacts after his win over Wattimena (credit:Lawrence Lustig/PDC)

James Wade has labelled the Winter Gardens as “the last great venue in darts” as he aims to get his hands back on the World Matchplay trophy.

Wade is part of an elite group of only seven players to have claimed BetVictor World Matchplay glory since the tournament's inception back in 1994.

At 24, Wade became the youngest Matchplay champion in 2007 and has finished runner-up on a further six occasions.

Like so many, the left-hander has made no secret of the Winter Gardens being his favourite venue and believes the age-old complex is the last remaining true venue in the sport.

"In my opinion it is the only true venue left in darts," Wade told Live Darts.

"I defy anyone to put a good argument against what I'm saying by it's the only great darts venue left.

"It's the only original darts venue, if they can put a good argument against that then I'm willing to listen."

Wade ended an unwanted run of successive First Round exits in the sport's summer show-piece by edging past Dutch debutant Jermaine Wattimena in a tense tie break on Monday.

Wade averaged 89.6 and admits nerves threatened to get the better of him in the latter stages of the contest.

"I was so nervous and anxious to get across the finish line," he added.

"I've got a baby on the way, that's no excuse.

"I'm sure if he saw his dad play like that he'd be quite ashamed!

"In three years I haven't proved a point, I haven't shone and done my thing.

"I guess that was god saying 'there you go, you can have that one as a freebie' but if I play like that again, I'll lose.

"Talk is cheap and darts player are famous for talking crap.

"If I said I've played like I can then it'd be a lie but onwards and upwards and hopefully I can raise my game and give people a good hiding."

Wade will now face Simon Whitlock in the Last 16 on Wednesday in what will be the third Matchplay meeting between the box office duo.

The Aldershot ace, who is due to become a father for the first time this autumn, is without a management deal and admits he is actively seeking professional advice in order to consistently recapture his top form.

"There's not many people left in the world of darts who I can get guidance from," he added.

"I keep going across people to try and find the winning formula.

"From a management point of view, I haven't had good management for the last five or six years and it's hard to do this game without management.

"Until I earn my stars as a player, I don't think I'm going to get management again so I need to get that bit right to get guidance and a management team behind me.

"It's like starting all over again, I want management again but I need the right management again."



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Wade hails the Winter Gardens as “The last great venue in darts”

James Wade has labelled the Winter Gardens as “the last great venue in darts” as he aims to get his hands back on the World Matchplay trophy.

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