Henderson aims to replicate his Premier League form (credit:Lawrence Lustig/PDC)
Big John Henderson has revealed he is using the mindset of “battering” rivals ahead of his 2019 World Matchplay bid.
The Highlander is using a new psychological approach to his game before taking on Simon Whitlock at the Winter Gardens on Monday.
Henderson, 46, is fired-up to whip the Wizard of Oz after a decent run of form in the lead-up to the Blackpool extravaganza.
He told Live Darts: “I’m actually working harder now than I’ve ever done in my career, I decided that practice wasn’t good enough for me.
“So I’ve been doing more exhibitions this year and that’s making me sharper.
“I think I annoy the other players because I turn up and tell them I’m using it as competitive practice so I’m going to be battering them!
“It’s definitely working, because I feel my standard has gone up considerably over the past few months. Now I just need to transfer that to the big stage.
“I do know what I can do. I’ve done it before and beaten all the best guys in the world like Michael [Van Gerwen] and Daryl [Gurney] in major tournaments.
“Consistency is my downfall really. I know if I can up my game one more level, then I could really do some damage.
“That’s why I’ve been so pleased with my work rate. I’ve been cracking my own whip, so to speak. I’m enjoying working hard at the game and getting the right rewards.”
Henderson has to go back to 2011 for his sole victory on the Winter Gardens stage, though he was involved in a thriller last year which ended in a sudden death defeat to Kim Huybrechts.
The popular Scot takes on a struggling Whitlock this time around but believes that the Australian will find his form for a cracking clash.
He added: “I know Simon has been having a tough time with a lot of first round exits on the tour. But he’s a class act and usually raises his game for the big tournaments.
“Simon can beat anyone on his day. I expect him to turn up and produce his A game. If he does that we are in for such a big match.
“The Winter Gardens is a very special place, a great atmosphere. I’ve not gone further than the last 16 which was eight years ago. That’s not a great record so I have to improve this time.”