Anderson relishing potential Nicholson clash at Ally Pally

Anderson is aiming third televised ranking title of the season (credit:Lawrence Lustig/PDC)

Gary Anderson could face old foe Paul Nicholson in his opening clash at the 2018/19 World Championship and says he cannot afford to look past the First Round.

The Flying Scotsman will take either former Players Champion Nicholson or Irish Matchplay winner Kevin Burness at the Alexandra Palace later this month.

Anderson, 47, admits just getting through that opening game is the one that all the top seeds fear in the lead up to the sport's blue riband event.

"You ask anybody what they think is the worst game and they will say the first one," said Anderson.

"Go around any of the lads in the top eight and they will all say the same thing.

"Once you get past that one, then you can start to look forward and see how the tournament goes from that point.

"But, of course, it would be great to get a third World title.

"To be honest, I just about had a third only for Michael [van Gerwen] to do me at the end.

"Last year it was Phil who beat me and I wasn’t too happy with the way that one turned out.

"But the way the game is now, you just have to turn up and play.

"If you're on your game, you could win. It’s not a case of you will win, it’s a case of you could win because these boys are just getting better and better year after year.

"Whoever it is who lifts the trophy at the end of the tournament, it will have been well deserved."

Anderson has won the UK Open, US Masters, World Matchplay and Champions League in a terrific year of success on the big stage.

The world number four continues to pick and choose his playing schedule and admits that time off has been the key to his success.

He added: "This year has gone quite well for me, especially the way I have approached things.

"I have spent half of my life living out of a suitcase playing darts.

"People have said to me that I might be doing things wrong these days, but I want a bit of me time and a bit of family time.

"I've had a good few weeks off and I have enjoyed having them.

"These youngsters who are playing these days absolutely love it. They are on the road 24/7 and that’s their life now.

"I’ve done it a long time. Phil Taylor did it a long time. Even though Michael (van Gerwen) is only 29 or 30, he’s been doing it a long time now as well.

"It takes a lot out of you and you have to find ways to get a break.

"Most folk go to work Monday until Friday and then have Saturday and Sunday at home, we're away most times Wednesday until Monday the whole year.

"But I've got the wee one now Cheylea, who is one. I missed a good six or seven months of her life, so I do want to spend a bit more time with her."


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Anderson relishing potential Nicholson clash at Ally Pally

Gary Anderson could face old foe Paul Nicholson in his opening clash at the 2018/19 World Championship and says he cannot afford to look past the First Round.

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