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Exclusive: Nathan Aspinall talks ‘rollercoaster’ year and new season goals on eve of Bahrain opener

Nathan Aspinall revealed his three main ambitions for the new season as the Asp looks to strengthen his place among the darting elite.

Looking back at the last 12 months, the 32-year-old experienced his fair share of highs and lows.

Aspinall reached the UK Open quarter-final, was runner-up at the World Series of Darts finals and also claimed his second career major at the World Matchplay.

However, the Asp also missed out on the Premier League play-offs and, more recently, was knocked out in the second round of the PDC World Darts Championship.

“The year itself has been a rollercoaster, so up and down,” Aspinall told Planet Sport. “Started of with a decent run in the UK Open. It took a great performance from Michael van Gerwen to beat me.

“Back in the Premier League which was obviously a dream. I conducted myself very well, had a good Premier League campaign. But throughout the Premier League there was a lot of flaws in my game, a bit of dartitis came into play. It was a bit of a struggle at the end of it.

“I dusted myself down and obviously the Matchplay was the pinnacle. The biggest moment of my career.

“Backed that up with a final in the World Series and had a final in New Zealand so the middle part of the year was fantastic.

“But certainly dipped off at the back end of the year. That’s something I was disappointed with. But on the whole, it was a fantastic season. Picked up a major, back in the Premier League, back in the World Series. Hopefully can better it in 2024.”

Aspinall will be one of 16 players taking part in the second edition of the Bahrain Masters this week – a tournament which kicks off the latest World Series of Darts.

The Asp takes on Lourence Ilagan in the opening round and could meet world championship finalist Luke Littler in the quarter-finals, should both men progress.

Looking ahead to the new season, Aspinall underlined his three main ambitions for the campaign.

He said: “We play that many games, that many tournaments, you have to take it a tournament at a time. Starting off with the first World Series event this year in Bahrain.

“I’ve set myself targets this year. I want to stay in the top four. I’m currently in the top four only by £250 ahead of Gerwyn Price.

“I’d like to stay in the top four come the end of the season, I want to pick up another major. Certainly, a big target is to make the play-offs in the Premier League. See what happens in London.”

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