17th March 2007 – Bigwigs, Audenshaw @ UK Open NW Regional Finals
DartsMad – Hi Bob, thanks for talking to us. Tell us how 2006 went for you and how happy you were with it.
Bob Anderson – It went ok, the World Grand Prix in Dublin was definitely the highlight.
DM – Yeah, it’s a great tournament. I paid a visit last year for the first time and I’ll be going back again this year for sure. How’s 2007 going for you so far?
BA – I’ve had a poor start to the year due to a shoulder injury that I’ve been carrying for a while now. It’s getting better so I’m hopeful that I can pick my form up and start to get a bit more success.
DM – I was going to ask about that, you have had some problems with your shoulder recently. How much did it affect your game? And are you back to full fitness now?
BA – It has had a real impact on my form but I’m back to about 85% now and improving daily.
DM – Have you set yourself any targets for 2007 then?
BA – My aim is basically to stay in contact. I want to qualify for all the major tournaments so I need to stay in touch and give myself a chance. If I can make the majors, regardless of how I do in them, I’ll be happy. I’d like to win them all obviously though!
DM – So taking that into consideration, where do you hope to be this time next year?
BA – I’d like to be around the same level in the rankings. I don’t want to drop below my current position so staying level is a reasonable target for the coming year.
DM – Where does the UK Open rank on your list of priorities/favourite tournaments?
BA – It’s a tournament that I would love to win but the format makes it very difficult. There’s luck needed with the draw and schedule means it’s a long hard couple of days.
DM – You did quite well last year I remember. What’s your record like in the UK Open?
BA – Yeah I got to the last 16 last year and finished last 32 in the previous years I’ve played. I’d love to improve on that this year.
DM – For me, one of the most intriguing tourneys of ‘yesteryear’ was the NOTW. The short format and openness of it was fascinating and made it extremely difficult to win. Did you ever get to play in it? If so, how did you find it? If not, would you have liked to? And how do you think it compares to the UK Open?
BA – Yes I played in it many times but I never got any further than the South West finals. It was a wonderful tournament.
DM – In the mid 80’s there were reportedly 14 televised tournaments! Do you think that’s saturation? Which maybe fed the decline? Do you think the current balance is right? Do you wish the PDC tourneys were on The BeeB? And do you think it will happen in the near future?
BA – There is plenty of room for 14 or more TV events. There is no current balance between Sky and terrestrial TV, and this should be improved. Sky are willing to spend money on production – BBC are not!
DM – Back to the present day – the announcement of the IDL & WDT coming onto the PDC Order of Merit has many plusses and is good for the progress of the sport. However, I think money gained from an invitation is grossly unfair and should be discounted from the OoM. What’s your opinion on this?
BA – It’s totally wrong to include any prize money in the Order Of Merit like that in my opinion.
DM – Ok Bob, here’s your lucky dip questions – do you get recognised in the street?
BA – Yes I’m pleased to say!
DM – Premier League crowds – discuss.
BA – Large, which is welcome, unruly which is not. “Best of order, game on” means nothing to elements of the crowd.
DM – Yeah, it’s like a football match at times! I guess it will suit some players and affect others. Who’s your player to watch in 2007?
BA – James Wade.
DM – And finally, Clarkson – perceptive or a prat?
BA – I hold the article in contempt.
DM – Well said! Thanks Bob, I hope the shoulder gets back to 100% soon so you can have a good run at the rest of the year. See you in Bolton!