Ricky Evans, the fastest man on the PDC Tour, has had to bide his time this season.

After failing to reach the 2018 PDC World Championship, Evans has been quietly rebuilding. He hasn’t made many headlines – except a surprise defeat to 12-year-old Leighton Bennett at the Cambridgeshire Open – but an Ally Pally return looks likely. The 28-year-old is confident in himself, and told Dartsnews.com that while it isn’t a foregone conclusion, he always felt qualification was within his reach.

“I haven’t surprised myself, as I know I’ve got the game,” Evans said.

“I’ve had some great wins this year and have been getting to the last 16 consistently which has put me in contention for a return to Ally Pally, I won’t believe I’ve qualified until I see my name in the draw.”

Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Moving on up

The Kettering thrower slipped down the rankings, but is showing signs of progression on that front. Qualification for this weekend’s German Darts Championship is a bonus. Success there could lead Evans to the European Championship. For now, improvement is the name of the game.

“I ever really worry about my ranking and tour card, although personally I’m a much better player than my ranking suggests. Hopefully with the start I’ve made this year I can race up the tables and qualify for my events.

“My targets for the rest of the season are too play at my highest level and maybe, just maybe, I’ll win an event.

“I do enjoy the European Tour events as the atmosphere is amazing, so getting to as many of them as possible is also a target,” he said.

Inspiration

Evans is part of the Nevada Management Team, along with a host of big names. Even with the likes of Stephen Bunting and Dave Pallett in the mix, world champion Cross is very much the inspirational figure of the group.

“Having Rob in the same stable is brilliant,” Evans enthused.

“Even with it being only his second year on tour, he has such a wise head with good knowledge and advice. He’s a great player and someone who i admire and look up too for what he did last year.

“It just shows with the right dedication, support and obvious talent that the money and life is there for anyone to grab.”

Pieter Verbeek/PV-Darts

Photo: Pieter Verbeek/PV-Darts

Aspiration

There’s no doubt that Evans considers himself among those who could potentially follow in Voltage’s slipstream. The man they call ‘Rapid’ isn’t in a rush to the top, but he believes it’s just a matter of time before he’s mixing it with the world’s best.

“I do believe that there is a big future for me,” Evans asserted.

“Even though I’ve been on the tour five years, I feel I’m still learning and haven’t produced my best yet.

“It’s consistency with me, and as soon as it does eventually click I’m confident I can be a top 32 player and more.”

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Author: Ed McCosh