It wasn’t that long ago that Andy Hamilton was a world finalist.

In 2012, the Hammer almost reached the summit of PDC darts. He lost to Adrian Lewis at the Ally Pally though, and hasn’t looked close to returning to that career high point. After losing his Tour Card, Hamilton made the switch to the BDO. Currently 34th in the world, the Stoke man has rediscovered his darting joie de vivre.

Hamilton told Live Darts in an interview: “I’ve come into the BDO this year – I wasn’t blindfolded, it was to try and get my confidence back and the BDO gave me that chance.

“Now I’m loving the game again and I can’t wait for the future.”

Bouncing back

Things didn’t always look this rosy for the Hammer. He endured a miserable 2017, eventually dropping out of the world’s top 64. After a raft of medical concerns, he realised that 2018 wasn’t the time to fight to get his Tour Card back.

“I knew I was dropping, obviously I had personal problems and medical issues that I’ve had to get sorted out,” he said.

“That’s one of the reasons I took a year out was to get medical things sorted, I’ve had an eye operation so I’ve got new glasses and I’ve had sciatica which I’ve had injections for.

“I want to get myself right before I have another bash at it.”

PDC Europe

Photo: PDC Europe

Big plans

And have another bash at it, he will. Hamilton has already thrown his name into the ring for January’s Q-School in Wigan. The BDO’s recent move to repeal historic bans on Q-School attendees from entering their events also gives him more flexibility, should he fail to get a Tour Card.

“I’m going to go to Q School and have another bash at getting a Tour Card. I want to play in the PDC again and I want to compete again,” he announced.

“The next option to a Tour Card is to do the Challenge Tour and I could still do BDO events as well as the Challenge Tour now that the ban has been lifted.”

Lakeside dream

But before all that, there’s the small matter of the BDO World Championship to consider. Hamilton is in with a shout of making it to the Lakeside for January’s showdown. Having appeared 12 times in the PDC equivalent, the former BDO World Darts Trophy semi-finalist would love to make a major splash in this code. That being said, he has even loftier goals in mind, so not all roads lead to Frimley Green.

“The last couple of months I’ve had good results and put me on the edge of where I could be at Lakeside, but it isn’t the be all and end all for me,” Hamilton claimed.

“I’ve been brought up on watching Lakeside so to go and play there would be a dream come true.”

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Author: Edward McCosh