As far as debut seasons in the PDC go, Glen Durrant is producing one of the best.

Even with five months left in the season, Durrant has still enjoyed the sort of start most Q-School graduates would kill to have. The Middlesbrough ace picked up two PDC floor events early in the season. He has now complemented those triumphs with a superb run to the World Matchplay semi-finals. Wins over major champions Adrian Lewis, Michael van Gerwen and James Wade carried Durrant to the last four. The popular Teessider’s run was ended by Michael Smith, but overall the Matchplay was a great success.

“All the hopes and dreams I had about the week, the concerns I had – Was I good enough? Was I going to perform?

“It exceeded all expectations and at one point at the end I thought I was going to go all the way, but I was delighted with a semi-final,” ‘Duzza’ said to The Darts Show.

Sweet memories

The Winter Gardens can create an intense atmosphere, albeit one which is widely loved by players and fans alike. Three-time BDO world champion Durrant likened the opulent Blackpool venue to another place in which he’s enjoyed success.

“I played in front of a Premier League crowd which was totally different. What it did mirror was Lakeside,” he revealed.

“Very traditional building, a lot of history, a lot of memories. The crowd were virtually on top of you so I was using that as a parallel really of how I wanted to play.

“I was concerned about the fans and whether they were going to take to me, but my overriding memory was when they were shouting my name, the goosebumps. That’s the memory I take away the most.

“I was shocked more than anybody that they took to me, but I just think they saw an ordinary man having an extraordinary week and they were all part of that journey with me.

“It was a pretty special memory to have.”

Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Up with the best

“My stats are up there with the best in the world, I’m in the top eight in terms of averages,” said the 48-year-old.

“I proved this week to myself and to a lot of people that I deserve to be up there playing against the best players in the world.”

“I’m going in the right direction. If I had beaten Michael Smith in the semi-finals that would have opened the door for the Grand Slam and I would have been in the top 32.

“I would have snapped your hand off for that when I was three darts away from being knocked out of Q School by Matthew Dennant.”

The World Championship – for which Durrant is looking likely to be a seed – is starting to loom on the horizon.

“For the very first time I’m beginning to think about the Ally Pally now. My thought processes were always on the Matchplay – it was a dream to play there and now I’m just beginning to get things in place for an amazing back end of the year.

“It would be brilliant to have another run and it would be a dream come true to lift a trophy.”

Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

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Author: Ed McCosh