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Durrant rues “missed opportunity” as World Matchplay title quest falls short

Gurney hits out at “two-faced” pundits after reaching World Matchplay Semi-Finals

Jamie Shaw in Darts Interviews 02 Dec 2019
Gurney celebrates on the Winter Gardens stage (credit:Lawrence Lustig/PDC)
Daryl Gurney has hit out at television pundits he believes are “two-faced” after coming through an epic Quarter-Final battle at the 2019 World Matchplay on Friday.
Gurney denied Peter Wright in arguably the match of the tournament so far, averaging 101.8 to the Scot’s 104.5 in a pulsating 16-13 triumph.
The number three seed began the tie as the outsider with the bookmakers, with many fans and pundits tipping ‘Snakebite’ to extend his 20-match unbeaten run.
Gurney, however, singled out Sky Sports’ Wayne Mardle in his post-match interviews after he predicted Wright to prevail before wishing the Northern Irishman well shortly before he went on stage.
Gurney said: “Obviously Mr Wayne Mardle, I haven’t got anything against him, but when he’s writing me off twice and sees me in the hallway and says “all the best” it’s a wee bit hard to take, but I’ll always keep on believing.
“I never really listen, but whenever there’s people writing you off before you even play and then can be two-faced when they say “all the best, champ.”
“Then you listen to them live on TV and they’re more or less writing you off.
“I know I’m never going to be the best player in the world, but I’m a grafter who can beat the best players in the world.
“As usual I did it the hard way, but I’m through now and I’ve got a massive opportunity to win this title.”
Gurney avenged his defeat to Wright in the 2017 Semi-Finals by wrapping up a dramatic win to reach the penultimate stage in Blackpool for the second time in three years
While ‘Superchin’ dismissed the win as “revenge”, he admits his last World Matchplay Semi-Final was a missed opportunity which he now has chance to rectify.
He added: “I think if I’d have got to the final in 2017, I could have ran Phil [Taylor] a lot closer than what he [Wright] did, because more or less, he gave Phil that final.
“We all know it, he walked in, gave him the bull [throw first], gave him the walk-on and whatever seat he wanted.
“If that was Michael [Van Gerwen] or Gary [Anderson] or myself, we wouldn’t have treated him differently to any other person whether it was his last Matchplay or first and that’s why Phil went up there and hammered him.”