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Van Gerwen vows: I'm hungry

Dominant Dutchman ready for return

MIGHTY Michael van Gerwen has sent a chilling warning out to his rivals that he’s “hungry” to retain his Unibet Premier League title.

The World No.1 takes on Rob Cross in a repeat of last year’s final which saw the Dutchman complete his fourth successive triumph and fifth in total.

MVG returns to the oche at the Marshall Arena in Milton Keynes aiming to wipe away this disappointment of missing out on the Matchplay title last month.

He admitted: “I noticed during these breaks that I really miss playing on the highest level every week and that is a good sign to me that I am hungry.

"The Premier League is always a special tournament for me and now I need to make sure I'm on top where I belong by the end of the league phase.

"Of course it was disappointing to lose at the World Matchplay, but sometimes these things can happen in darts.

"It feels like a long time ago and since then I've been looking forward to getting back on stage and doing what I do best.”

Meanwhile Gary Anderson can take inspiration from similar character Ronnie O’Sullivan and go for Unibet Premier League glory.

The two-time World Champion resumes his league campaign in Milton Keynes tonight against protege Michael Smith.

He admitted he struggled to find his throw during his run to the Matchplay final last month just like O’Sullivan not having his cue action on the way to his sixth World Championship last weekend.

Ando said: “Yes I’m struggling to find my throw the now. It’s all about the throw. It is hard, people don’t realise how hard it is.

“Being on the road all the time, being away from home. It kind of gets to you. 

“Ronnie is probably the best snooker player to have ever lived. It’s all about the class. I hope we never meet because I think we’ve got the same ideas!

Anderson faces Smith, Gerwyn Price and Michael van Gerwen on successive nights on his return to PL action at the Marshall Arena.

But that tough fixture list certainly doesn’t faze him. He added: “That’s alright, I take it as it comes. To win any tournaments nowadays with all these boys, you’ve got to beat every one of them. 

“I don’t think Michael van Gerwen is going to get all his own way now. The boys are stepping up the ladder even more now. You’ve got to beat everyone who is put in front of you.

“It’s been quiet this year with everything going on. We’re getting back to Milton Keynes, we’ve had the Pro Tour five days locked in there which I thought worked really well.

“Now we’ve got six nights Premier League, it will be good. You’re playing every night constant so once you’ve got into it a few nights, the darts will start to go back to the way they were I think.”

2020 Unibet Premier League
Night Seven
Tuesday August 25 (6.30pm), Sky Sports

Marshall Arena, Milton Keynes

Michael Smith v Gary Anderson

Michael van Gerwen v Rob Cross

Nathan Aspinall v Gerwyn Price

Chris Dobey v Daryl Gurney

Peter Wright v Glen Durrant

Words: Phil Lanning

Pictures: Taylor Lanning

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