“I’d rather be a player but unfortunately I’m sh*t now" - Wayne Mardle reflects on his role as Sky Sports commentator

Wayne Mardle has successfully transitioned from player to commentator over the past years. Still, he looks back on his playing career with melancholy.

Mardle reached the semifinals of the World Darts Championship four times, most recently in 2008. In 2012, he put a stop to his career before going to work as a commentator and analyst at Sky Sports. “I’d rather be a player but unfortunately I’m shit now, I’m not good enough,” he tells the Daily Star. “But I get a massive buzz out of watching these players doing their stuff on the stage because I know how difficult it is. It’s such a great location and to commentate on them is an absolute pleasure.”

“I don’t miss playing because of the way I feel," continues the former Hawaii 501. "I don’t suffer from anxiety, but I used to have performance anxiety back in the day, which is why I acted like a clown, danced and wore the Hawaiian shirts. For me personally, it worked because I was reaching World semi-finals and major finals.”

Mardle, however, was advised to start acting more seriously. "The consensus was that if I knuckled down and stopped messing about, I’d get over the line [by winning a major], but that didn’t help me, it made it worse, it made me even more edgy."

“It distracted me from that nervousness and got rid of that excess adrenalin for me. I think of the way I used to feel and that makes me not want to play. But I wish I had that game, that energy that I had 15 years ago. That’s when I have those thoughts when I think I’d love to get out there. But on a day-to-day basis, it frightens the life out of me.”

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