Martin Adams is looking forward to returning to a ‘home from home’ when he plays in the WDF Men’s World Championship at Lakeside at the start of next year.
The three-time BDO world champion, who won all three of his world titles at the Lakeside Country Club back in 2007, 2010 and 2011, is among the 48-player field for the men’s event in January.
The 65-year-old featured in 25 consecutive World Championships at Lakeside from 1994 to 2018, and secured his spot in the 2022 tournament after finishing 29th in the WDF rankings, following the cut-off last month.
“I’m looking forward to going back to Lakeside,” Adams said. “I’m looking forward to playing darts.
“Whether the darts go or not will be another matter. To be honest, Lakeside is like a home from home.
“I played at Lakeside for 25 years on the spin and absolutely loved every minute of it. I don’t see this one being any different really.
“It’s the crowd that makes Lakeside so special. You see in a lot of the televised events that the crowd are well back from the stage.
“At Lakeside they’re almost in your pocket, they’re that close. They’re right behind you and it all helps create a great atmosphere.”
The race to Lakeside for the WDF World Championships has been a disjointed one, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, with only ranking events from February to March 2020 and June this year onwards counting.
Adams picked up the majority of his points from events held before the pandemic, with runs to the final of last year’s Isle of Man Open and semi-finals of last year’s Scottish Open contributing to 124 points of his 168-point haul.
Aside from playing in the WDF double-header in Bridlington in October, Adams has more often been seen in the Online League on YouTube, where he recently threw another nine-dart leg on the live stream.
“I wasn’t going to put myself at risk of Covid,” Adams explained. “Also, I have to consider my partner, who is classed as a vulnerable person.
“No way was I going to go off and do all the different tournaments and bring Covid home. That wasn’t on the menu whatsoever.
“The Online League is absolutely brilliant. It’s been a lifeline for me in many ways. It’s very competitive and the standard has risen as it’s gone on.”
Adams will begin his 27th World Championship campaign in the first round, with the winners progressing to the last 32, where the 16 seeds enter the action.
Belgium’s Brian Raman is the top seed, with France’s Thibault Tricole, 2020 BDO world champion Wayne Warren and Scotland’s Ross Montgomery completing the top four seeds.
Irish Open champion Luke Littler, 14, will be the eighth seed on his debut at the Lakeside, and will be among those battling it out for the £50,000 winner’s cheque, which comes from a prize fund of £200,000.
But Wolfie still has plenty of bite. His run to the final of the inaugural World Seniors World Championship in February, and his consistently excellent Live League efforts, show the benefit of constant activity and high-level match practice, could he go one better on his return ‘home’?
Words: Alex Moss (co-host of The Weekly Dartscast available at Apple or wherever you get your podcasts)