“Everybody thinks we’re enemies,” Mason told the PDC’s Darts Show Podcast. “We certainly weren’t rivals because I wasn’t good enough. What an amazing player.
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By his own admission, 'Mace the Ace' resented and was jealous of Taylor's prowess on the oche and this boiled over including at the 2007 PDC World Championship where he criticised 'The Power' pre match and tensions boiled over post match too.
But it was not always that way as he discussed with regular practice sessions before their relationship broke down.
“Tuesday and Wednesday I’d drive to Stoke and, this is terrible I know, I’d sit in the car at nine o’clock in the morning and drink four cans of cider.
“I’d knock on the door at 10 o’clock and Phil would open the door to the Cricketers [the pub Taylor owned at the time] in a pair of slippers with a mug of tea [and say], ‘alright m’duck’, and then we’d practice. Well, he would!
“He’d say ‘are you coming back tomorrow?’ And I’d say ‘yup’. I did that for ages and ages. He was so generous with his time and his advice. He did it with other players as well.
“His success wasn’t a secret. He was the most dedicated, the most hardworking, the most disciplined player. We’d go to tournaments and I’d be crawling into hotels at four and five in the morning out of my brains.
“Phil had already been in bed for seven hours by then. He was a winning machine and it wasn’t by chance, he wasn’t born with this gift.
“We were great pals and we fell out because of my jealousy, my resentment and my frustration.”