Today i am joined by PDC professional Steve West, who recently qualified for,and played in the Grand Slam of Darts in which he was placed in a tough group with Michael van Gerwen,Kim Huybrechts and Mark Oosterhuis,West didnt make it past the group stages but played some beautiful darts, he faced Huybrechts in his first match losing 5-2 but he averaged 94.88, then in his second match he faced the dutch qualifier Mark Oosterhuis, West was very impressive as he won the game 5-0 with a 93.54 average, in his final game he faced World number one Michael van Gerwen it was a close game with West narrowly losing out 5-3 as Van Gerwen went on to win the tournament.
Life in the BDO
Steve played in the BDO from 2012-2015 in which he reached the quarter finals of the World Masters in 2008 and 2009,and also the Zuiderduin masters quarter finals in 2007 and 2009.
Along with his brother Tony who incidentally won the World Masters back in 2003.
Life in the PDC
Steve successfully won a PDC tour card in 2012 at qualifying school in wigan on the second day of a four day event,beating Gino Vos in the last round on the way to winning his tour card, a day after his brother Tony earned his tour card, unfortunately he could not play the whole PDC schedule due to major hip surgery.
He returned in 2013 to play in all of the UK Open qualifiers where his best result came in the fifth event where he lost in the last 16 to Jelle Klaasen.
He qualified for the UK Open and went all the way to the 5th round losing out to Peter Wright 9-4.
West returned to qualifying school in january this year,gaining his tour card on the third day beating Tim Martin 5-2 in the final round.
West has got to the Last 16 of Players Championship events FOUR times and is looking in the form of his life, and is currently in 55th place in the Pro Tour order of merit.
Thanks for joining us Steve, first of all how is darts going for you at the moment? you hit some good form at the Grand Slam and beaten some good players to Qualify.
“Darts at the moment are going fine but still need to improve to compete at the PDC”
In 2012 it appeared you had a major hip problem, has that been sorted now?
“Yes i had major hip surgery in 2012 and even now its still painful but i am getting through it”
2015 has probably been your best year since joining the PDC,with four last 16 appearances,what are your targets for the rest of the year?
“Just hoping to get through the world championship qualifier on monday the 30th then my year would be very satifying to say the least”
The World championship qualifiers are next week,are you feeling confident?
“I feel i am playing the best darts i have ever played at the moment so yes very confident going into it, but we all know in darts there is no guarantees, its how you play on the day that counts”
Did you enjoy it on the big stage at the Grand Slam?
“I loved it at the Grand Slam apart from being a little nervous in the first few legs against Kim Huybrechts, i think i played very well and enjoyed every bit of the experience”
How often do you practise,and do you practise alone or with a partner?
“I try to do a little practice everyday if possible but because my hip is making my back painful i can only do short sessions on the board, i had a good practice with Kevin Painter before the Grand Slam and he will be coming down to essex shortly for a practise”
Have you any advice on any players that want to make the switch from the BDO to the PDC in January?
“Best advice for anyone thinking about moving over would be to make sure you have enough money to do it because it is expensive to do the tour, i have struggled through with the help of some great people and am thankful to them all,Also believe in your ability and make a good show in every match you play,Dont stop believing”
You have gone through Q school four times and succeeded on every occasion just how hard was that with so many quality players taking part?
“Done it three times in a row now and luckily for me managed to win one of the 4 toughest days everytime,Its very hard and you have to be able to take disappointment and bounce back for the next few days if you lose.The field of players is getting tougher every year now and i am glad this year i dont have to go there”
Who are your friends on and off the oche in the PDC?
“Kevin Painter , John Part and Matt Clark , we all sit on the same table every event and have a great laugh, also Mervyn King is one of my best mates, always there for me with advice and that helps me a lot,thank him dearly and the others because without all of them i dont think i would be there playing and enjoying my game as much”
Thanks for your time Steve,and we wish you all the best in the future.
“Thank you and good luck”