Peter Wright vows to 'get his finger out' and win Premier League title

World champion looking to end Premier League hoodoo when the Premier League returns with a new format this year.

Peter Wright says it is about time he "pulled his finger out" and added a Premier League title to his impressive haul of honours.

The world champion has come close to winning the competition before in 2017, when he lost to Michael van Gerwen in the final.

This year there is a new format in operation, with the round-robin league replaced with 17 individual competitions comprising of a quarter-finals, semi-finals, and final.

It all gets underway in Cardiff on Thursday, where Wright will play Michael Smith - the man he beat in the World Championships final a month ago - and he can't wait to get going.

He said: "I want to get my finger out and actually play well in the Premier League for once. I've turned up and had some good high averages and stats before but never done that well in it.

"I'm knuckling down and I think I'll do well in this one and especially because of the change of format as well.

"I think it will benefit me because it's a competition. I think that will be the same for all the players.

"It's a straight knockout and not just one game a night, there's a potential of three games. They're the best players in the world.

"It's going to do us all good I think and it's going to be great for TV and great for the crowd."

Welshman Gerwyn Price will have the rare experience of having the fans on his side as he begins against James Wade on home soil.

Price, who is an antagonistic character, spends most of his time on the tour on the receiving end from the crowd, but that will not be the case in the Welsh capital.

He missed out on last year's competition after catching Covid-19, so is looking forward to it.

"It was gutting for me to miss out last year, obviously testing positive for Covid," he said. "But nice to be back and what better way than to kick off in Cardiff. Looking forward to it.

Peter Wright with the Sid Waddell Trophy after victory against Michael Smith during day sixteen of the William Hill World Darts Championship at Alexandra Palace, London. Picture date: Monday January 3, 2022.

"It's going to be nice, not just because it's Cardiff."

The 2021 world champion has never reached the semi-finals of the event in its old guise, but is also targeting a better showing this year.

"My biggest enemy I always say is just myself - which one of me is going to turn up," he said.

"I missed out last year and not really done well in this tournament before. I've reached the last five twice. It would be nice to get into the top four and lift this trophy.

"I want to win majors I haven't won but this is the next big one on the list. Then the Matchplay. Hopefully I can do that all in one year.

"I think in previous Premier Leagues, I missed out on the top four by a point. Every week was vital then and every week is vital now. My mindset hasn't changed."

There is a blockbusting tie between Michael van Gerwen and Gary Anderson, while another Welshman Jonny Clayton takes on debutant Joe Cullen.

ALSO READ: 2022 Premier League Darts: Format, draw, prize money and a look at all eight contenders

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